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FG lifts ban on registration of new SIM cards

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The federal government on Thursday lifted the ban on registration of new Subscribers Identification Module (SIM) card.

The new development says subscribers will be able to buy new SIM cards from Monday, April 19, 2021, on the condition that they make their National Identity Number (NIN) available.

The latest development was contained in the revised National Digital Identity Policy for SIM Card Registration approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

According to a statement by the Technical Assistant (Information Technology) to Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Femi Adeluyi, the implementation of the Policy will commence on Monday, 19th of April 2021.

“The issuance of New SIMs and other suspended activities will resume on the same date, as long as verification is done and the guidelines are fully adhered to.

“The Minister has also directed NCC and NIMC to ensure that the provisions of the Policy are strictly followed by all operators and subscribers.

“The Policy includes Guidelines on New SIM Acquisition and Activation, SIM Replacement, New SIM Activation for Corporates and Internet-of-Things/Machine-to-Machine (IoT/M2M), amongst others.

“The possession of a National Identity number will be a prerequisite for each of these categories. For the Corporate registration, institutions will be required to appoint a Telecoms Master (at the minimum of an Executive Management level) to provide the operational Primary NIN representation.

“The Telecoms Master will also be responsible for ensuring that the users provide their NINs to serve as a Secondary NIN.

“For IoT/M2M activations, SIM security protocols would be implemented on the SIM profile to ensure that SIMs can only be used for point to point data services specific to the URL they are working with. All other services will be barred.”

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