“THE registration time frame is too short. How can everyone register during that period knowing that the first few weeks of the registration were a failure?”
Celina Pascual, a 36-year-old from Bulacan, is having difficulty registering her SIM due to internet problems since their house is located at a dead-end compound. Her phone can only detect internet signals if she goes out of the house.
And now she only has a little over three months left to complete the registration.
The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) and the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) said Monday that Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) registration would end on April 26, 2023.
This is two months earlier than the June 27, 2023 deadline that was initially expected.
The SIM card registration law, or the Republic Act 11934, established a 180-day registration window for SIM cards. After the NTC released the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for the SIM registration on December 12, the registration period started 15 on December 27, 2022, and was supposed to end on June 27, 2023.
However, the DICT and NTC said in a joint statement that the April 26 deadline “was based on the law, and no movement of the deadline was made.”
To put it simply, the DICT started the 180-day window from October 28, 15 days after the new law was published in a newspaper, and not from December 27, 15 days after the release of the IRR.
“While the DICT may extend the registration for another 120 days, the aim is to finish the registration within the original deadline,” the DICT said.
Albay representative Joey Salceda hit the DICT for its “unusual” decision and encouraged the department to stick to the original schedule based on the law.
“It’s highly unusual to make that decision. Whatever the merits, let’s just stick to what the law says,” Salceda said
But what if you fail to register your SIM prior to the April 26 deadline?
According to the IRR, the SIM will be immediately deactivated if you don’t register an existing SIM within the set deadline. Only after registration may the deactivated SIM be activated again, and that activation must happen no later than five days following the immediate deactivation.
“They should be considerate; not all Filipinos have the means to register during that period,” Pascual said in Filipino.
According to Pascual, the government should not only put up registration sites in remote areas with difficult access to the internet, but they should also make the registration accessible to all, regardless of their location.
“We should also have designated on-site registration for those who can’t access the internet like us,” she said.
The DICT said the rules for administering SIM registration in remote communities are currently being finalized and will be made public soon.
There are currently 20,551,294 registered SIM cards in the country, which is only 12.16 percent of the 168,977,773 million subscribers nationwide, according to the latest data provided by the DICT.
Of the total number of registered SIM cards, Smart Communications Inc. reported a total of 10,041,791 SIMs registered, which is 14.77 percent of Smart’s 67,995,734 subscribers. Globe Telecom Inc. recorded 8,764,568 SIMs registered — 9.97 percent of its 87,873,936 subscribers.
At the same time, DITO Telecommunity Corp. reported a total of 1,744,935 SIMs registered, which is 13.31 percent of its 13,108,103 subscribers.
How to register
For new SIM card subscribers:
Users will be asked to register their SIM by providing the following information:
- Full name
- Date of Birth
- Identification card and ID number
- Mobile phone number of the SIM card and serial number
Existing SIM card users:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Present/Official Address
- Type of ID presented
- ID number presented
Postpaid SIM card users:
In the case of postpaid SIM card subscribers, since their network providers have their data, they will just need to verify their SIM registration details with the telco to complete the registration.
Registration is free of charge.
Where to register
For Globe, TM, and Gomo SIM card users:
Globe Telecom Inc.: https://new.globe.com.ph/simreg
For Smart, Talk N Text, and Sun SIM card users:
Smart Communications Inc.: https://smart.com.ph/simreg
For DITO SIM Card users:
Dito Telecommunity: https://dito.ph/RegisterDITO
Those who attempt to register a SIM card using incorrect or fictitious information or who use false identities or fake IDs will face a prison sentence ranging from six months to two years and a fine ranging from P100,000 to P300,000.
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