Philippines says yes to pre-paid SIM registration bill

26 May 2015

The Philippines’ lower chamber, the House of Representatives, has approved a bill that calls for the systematic registration of all pre-paid mobile subscriber identity module (SIM) cards in the country. If passed into law, Bill 5231 would affect tens of millions of existing and future pre-paid mobile users, The Philippine Star writes. As it stands, there are no formal requirements for anyone to provide confirmation of their identity when buying a pre-paid handset, though the government is keen to stamp out the use of unregistered mobiles for nefarious means. The authors of Bill 5231 say that ownership of a mobile phone, whilst encouraged, carries a great responsibility, noting that the: ‘mechanism for its effective use for the good of all and not for an illegal or malicious purpose to benefit a few must be installed’. The new rules require that anyone purchasing a pay-as-you-go SIM fill in documentation and provide photographic proof of identity at the time of purchase.