Buying pre-registered SIM cards from online sellers defeats the purpose of RA 11934 — PhilTraComm

Buying pre-registered SIM cards from online sellers defeats the purpose of RA 11934 — PhilTraComm

MANILA – The lead convenor of the anti-fraud and anti-fake news group, Philippine Transport and Communication (PhilTraComm), on Friday, warned the public anew against buying “already-registered” subscriber identity module (SIM) cards so as to avoid unnecessary future legal entanglement.

Enterprising online sellers are using Facebook and other social media platforms in selling SIM cards through the “Marketplace.”

The Marketplace is a sub-group in Facebook selling various commodities from A to Z.

“We heard this on the radio this week that is why we’re back again in warning the public not to patronize or buy pre-registered SIM cards,” Aio Bautista, PhilTraComm president, said.

“This (selling registered SIM cards.) has become an underground business, as such, we never know their origin nor the background of previous SIM owners. So to avoid complicity or legal entanglement in the future it would be best for everyone to personally register their own SIM cards after buying a brand new one,” Bautista said.

“It won’t take more than 15 minutes to register a new SIM card. All we need to do is punch on the search engine or browser for a walk-through on how to do it and presto you’ll be prompted in an instant,” Bautista added.

Selling pre-registered SIM cards may also serve as a window of opportunity for unscrupulous individuals for their nefarious activities scamming unsuspecting individuals online.

This is because, Bautista explained, “a buyer (of a pre-registered SIM) won’t be held responsible for his scamming ways rather, the responsibility falls on the peddlers as they were the ones who registered the SIM under their name.”

“And this defeats, actually, the purpose of Republic Act 11934 or the mandatory SIM Card Registration Law,” the PhilTraComm lead convenor said.

“The seller should have realized that they are the ones who will be held accountable as its owner and not the buyer of the pre-registered SIM. They are just helping them to do a merry-go-round of the RA 11934.”

The deadline of the mandated SIM registration law expired last April 26, 2023, but a day after (April 27) President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. approved a 90-day extension so as to provide the public ample time to register.

“We are hoping that we will have a more substantial number of SIM owners register days before the extension ends. I think this is going to be the last extension. This may no longer be extended further,” Bautista said even as he urged subscribers not to wait for the lapse of the extension before registering their SIM cards.


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