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A first step to Prepaid SIM Registration

Earlier this week, while talking to some executives of a local telco, I opened up the topic of prepaid SIM registration and asked why they’re not keen on implementing it on their own (without government mandate).

I told them that a recent poll on YugaTech readers, about 75% of over 2,000 respondents favor prepaid SIM registration.

Their answer was along the lines of logistical issues and and legal concerns (it’s basically the corporate lawyers telling everyone they can’t do some stuff that could open more legal problems in the future). I previously wrote about the pros and cons here as well.

So here was my suggestion:

1) Make registration voluntary. Only those who want to register will be initially included.

2) Integrate existing web services so deployment is fast and easy. Smart currently has my.Smart and Globe also has a Portal where people can register their mobile numbers.

3) Use this as verification of SIM ownership. So next time you lose, damage or accidentally blocked a SIM, you will only need to login to the website, de-activate the existing SIM, submit request for new one and even transfer the load credits, SMS and contact information (the last two need to be done as a web backup, prior to losing the SIM).

When claiming the new SIM in the business center, just present two valid IDs. No need for affidavit of loss and the SIM card tray.

That’s it. It’s a start, baby steps. No government involvement. We’ll worry about the other issues later.

It’s a win-win strategy — subscribers get added service and permanent ownership of a prepaid number while telcos can get to know more about the demographic profile of their subs.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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26 Responses

  1. Abel says:

    I actually like that idea sir Abe… especially for people who would want to retain their old SIM numbers and who want protection from SIM fraud. I hope that will be an option for some end users

  2. JM says:

    I totally Agree to sir abe..great idea..hehehehe..
    so hindi ka din pwede mag submit ng pakeng names..kasi once na gusto mong mag-claim..eh fake yung registered ID mo..wala ka magagawa..hehehe..

  3. berns says:

    Mine is already rigistered with my name because it is a Globe retailer SIM.

    In case of lose I can recover my retailer load ;P

  4. berns says:

    Mine is already registered with my name because it is a Globe retailer SIM.

    In case of loss I can recover my retailer load ;p

    – typo error

  5. Arvee says:

    Great idea! However I don’t think the SMS that are saved on the sim can be backup-ed. Take the iPhone for example. The iPhone only uses the SIM to import contacts and as a way to connect to the network.

    • Benchmark says:

      Hmm I know there are applications where you can transfer sim messages from one sim to another.

      And also there phones like my old samsung star where you can save the messages in your phone memory then transfer it to the the new sim afterwards. But still not sure coz I notice when the message is long, sometimes it became garbled.

    • Kenth says:

      Phones that usually have a PC suite usually have a means for users/owners to backup their SMS and address book. Depending on the phone manufacturer, their PC Suite can even even backup the phone’s calendar, to-do list, entries and sometimes even the settings.

      Have tried this on some Nokia and Sony Ericsson models that are supported by their Phone Manufacturer’s PC Suites.

      For Android smartphones, in forums I read up on, they usually mention that the phone contents can be backed up, even the apps installed.

  6. Aaron Cajes says:

    Totally Agree. :)

    It’s possible naman to transfer your current number to a new sim card(physical), why not make an online portal for “verified users”

    Looking forward to this… ;)

  7. Welsh says:

    I total agree to this also…

    however, we need to have a timeline also as to when we need to take the next baby step.

    we cant be on baby step 1 forever…

    just my 2 cents =)

  8. It’s a good start but I don’t like it to be voluntary forever. Sa una pwedeng gawing voluntary para makaiwas sa hassle pero after some time dapat maging mandatory na to sa lahat.

  9. YO says:

    seems interesting, sr. did htc lowered the price of HTC Mozart?? it’s already 14k+

  10. jojo says:

    sir, dito po sa brunei, lahat po ay required mag-submit ng photocopy ng passport o yung government issued identity card (IC) kung bumibili ng prepaid sim card kahit dun lang kayo bumili sa mga tabi-tabing store. kaya po walang mga text-scams dito.

  11. johnny B says:


  12. Alain says:

    I just hope replacing lost SIM is fast. It would be a pain if you have to wait x days for the telcos to verify your identity, your request and produce new sim cards. It’s not far-fetched. We all know how inefficient item replacement transactions usually are.

  13. Conrad says:

    Make telcos require subscribers to register their real identity first if they want to avail of uni-TXT promos so they cant use it to spam.

  14. Mai says:

    Totally agree. India makes sim registration mandatory, and manually BY PAPER, so online reg shouldn’t be such a big deal for Pinoys.

    • bobby wratten says:

      even in SG when I stayed there for 15 days. I bought a prepaid sim and its mandatory to register. i bought it at a small stall. They have this small scanner for the passport and a netbook with 3g connection to register my sim realtime. I

  15. It is an advantage for good and disadvantage for bad. I want it.

  16. marin says:

    a very neat idea…pero the way i see it …the telco wont be bothering doing it because it won’t increase their profits. they are only concern with what will benefit them.

  17. Laess Apolo says:

    I agree with everything except the voluntary part. It defeats the entire purpose of having SIMs registered. Only a small percentage will do so, just those who are really concerned, given the spoon-feeding mentality of the populace. For this to be successfully implemented the government will have to flex its muscle a bit albeit the negative reactions from telcos who are only so concerned with profit and couldn’t care much on security and order.

    • yuga says:

      @Laess Apolo – as I said in my article, it’s a start. If my survey is anything close to the real thing, around 75% of SIM users will go the voluntary way. The rest of the 25% will have to be done later on, using a more creative method.

  18. jojie says:

    I really hope sim registration gets implemented. I have two cousins who have been victimized by fraud text claiming they are their love ones abroad with a new sim and asking for loads for so called business. This would hopefully help fix such problems.

  19. sherwyn m. mapa says:

    ano po ba ang posible na paraan para magamit ko o makuha ulit yon number ng sim na nawala ko,.umaasa po na sana ay mabigyan nyo ako ng solusyon para magamit ko ulit yon number ko na nawala, maraming salamat po…

  20. sherwyn m. mapa says:

    pede ko pa ba e register ang simcard ko kahit nawala na sha sa akin kahapon…..

  21. Abner Urbano says:

    Hi. I would like to learn about this method its very useful.
    I have a problem now on how to change my pockect WiFi sim causing a lot of people using my connection. I don’t have my password yet on my pocket WiFi sim.


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