The Computer Society of Kenya

Since 1986


Monday September 24, 2018

Telcos have switched off hundreds of thousands of fraudulently registered SIM cards following a directive by the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).

The CA had issued the directive last Monday after a forensic audit of the mobile networks belonging to Safaricom, Airtel and Telkom Kenya revealed several subscribers had registered their lines with inaccurate and incomplete data, thus aiding criminal activity.

Some of the anomalies spotted include SIM cards with multiple registrations under different identity details, serial number length variations in registrations, using passports and alien IDs as well as lack of control by telecommunications operators on their agents.

“We wish to confirm that all customers on our network are registered,” Safaricom said in a letter to CA, dated September 17. Safaricom had 29.5 million subscribers by end of March according to CA data.

The CA director-general, Francis Wangusi, on Friday told the Business Daily that Telkom and Airtel had switched off thousands of SIM cards since the directive.

Telkom deactivated 14,373 subscribers from its network, it said in a letter addressed to the CA on Thursday.

Airtel said it switched off 584,134 SIM cards.

Mr Wangusi said another forensic audit will be done in November to confirm compliance.

Telcos who will not have complied with the directive risk fines of up to 0.2 per cent of their annual sales.  

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