Ghana has lost GHS107.5 million (USD32.2 million) in the space of around six months due to SIM box fraud, according to local media reports. The National Communications Authority (NCA) is said to be in the process of acquiring a new system to detect the true identity of SIM card owners to prevent future SIM box fraud. The scam involves the sale of black-market SIM cards, which allow users to avoid international telephony charges by using voice-over-internet protocol (VoIP) technology to terminate overseas calls as local traffic.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, in June 2012 Airtel Ghana reported the discovery of the third SIM box fraud gang within a week, as it looked to clamp down on the illegal routing of international calls. For its part, the NCA ‘declared war’ on the perpetrators of SIM box fraud in 2010, setting up the Joint Anti-Fraud Taskforce.