Telecel Zimbabwe, the country’s third largest cellco in terms of subscribers, has urged its users to register their SIM cards by 31 August 2013 or risk being disconnected, Technology Zimbabwe reports. The ultimatum comes one month after the country’s telecoms regulator the Post and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) issued a new directive to all mobile operators to disconnect unregistered subscribers due to an ‘upsurge in the number of offensive and abusive calls and text messages generated from unregistered SIM cards across all networks made and/or sent to citizens of Zimbabwe and members of the republic.’
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, in March 2010 POTRAZ ordered cellcos to register the personal details of all pre-paid SIM card users, for reasons of national security and to curb criminal activity. An August 2010 deadline was extended to 28 February 2011 to give users ample time to register (only 58% having done so by the original cut-off). Restrictions were applied to unregistered SIMs from 1 January 2011, including banning calls during peak periods.