Zimbabwe publishes subscriber registration law

14 Oct 2013

The Zimbabwean government has published a new law, Postal and Telecommunications Regulation No.143 of 2013, on the registration of subscribers by service providers. TechZim reports that although the published decision is an interpretation of the law that already exists, the new legislation expands the scope of previous regulations by including internet service providers (ISPs) and allowing law officers to gain access to the information without a court order. Under the terms set out by the document, telecoms service providers are not allowed to provide services to unregistered users; all users must be registered by 31 October or they will be disconnected; any changes in the information provided must be communicated to the network operator within a 21-day period; network operators must maintain a register with this personal information and retain information for up to five years after the subscriber has stopped using the service; the telecoms watchdog the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (POTRAZ) will maintain a central database of this information to ensure compliance with the requirements, law enforcement purposes, emergency services, national security purposes and research purposes; in the case of a lost or destroyed SIM card the police needs to be informed and a written report to be obtained; researchers can also get access to the data if they submit a request.