NCC Orders Telecos To Disable SIMs Without NIN

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has charged telecom operators to bar any active mobile line that is not linked to NIN on or before February 28, 2024. This was even as it said the same codes were introduced for mobile lines in order to authenticate and protect the identities of users.

This was disclosed by the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Communication (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida, at the NCC special day during the 45th Kaduna International Trade Fair held in Kaduna.

Represented by a director, Mr Reuben Mouka, Maida, he noted that” NCC is an independent national regulatory authority that oversees telecommunication services in Nigeria.

“Our vision at NCC is to create a dynamic regulatory environment that ensures universal access to affordable and equitable service and supports the nation’s economic growth, he said.

“As a regulator of the telecommunications sector in the country, the Commission carries out its functions to ensure service availability, accessibility, affordability, and sustainability for all categories of consumers who are leveraging on ICT and telecoms to drive personal and business activities.

He said in 2023, the telecoms industry contributed to the nation’s GDP, which stood at 13.5%, saying that “as we promote economic growth through the development of local content, we must also address the challenges faced by consumers, and NCC is committed to protecting their rights while ensuring their satisfaction.

“We therefore encourage businesses and service providers to prioritise customer satisfaction and uphold the highest standards of service delivery With our keen interest in and commitment to consumer protection, the NCC has implemented measures to safeguard the interests of consumers and businesses alike.

“We have established a robust regulatory framework that promotes transparency, quality of service, and fair competition. Additionally, we have set up channels for consumer redress, ensuring that consumers can resolve disputes in a timely and efficient manner.

“The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) had, on May 17, 2023, directed all licenced Mobile Network Operators (MNO) to commence implementation of approved Harmonised Short Codes (HSC) for providing services to Nigerian telecom consumers The measure initiated by the Commission is a bid to improve the quality of experience (QoE) of consumers across all mobile networks.

“The new initiative is enabling consumers using the over 224 million active mobile telephone lines in Nigeria to use the same codes to access services across all networks. For instance, the same code *310# will be used for checking airtime balance across all the networks.

“Campaign on National Identification Number-Subscriber Identification Module (NIN-SIM) Linkage: NIN-SIM linkage is the process of connecting your NIN to your phone number to authenticate and protect your identity.

To link your NIN to your SIM, a subscriber needs to submit his/her NIN to their respective Service Provider to complete the process of NIN-SIM linkage

“For subscribers who do not have the National Identification Number (NIN), they can obtain theirs from National Identification Management Commission (NIMC) Enrollment Centres of Your Service Providers Customer Care Centres, and you need a valid ID Card and BVN for enrollment.

A subscriber can also link his/her NIN to his/her SIM by sending the NIN-your 11-digit NIN-to 996 or dialling *996*.

To this end, Maida remarked that, as a matter of national security, telecom consumers must link their NIN to the SIM and that” the Commission has directed all telecommunication operators to bar the phone lines of subscribers whose lines are not linked to their NINs on or before February 28, 2024.