SIM box fraud has done a lot of damage to the Ghana’s economy as it has deprived the country and telecommunication companies’ revenues amounting to billions of cedis, according to reports.
As SIM box fraudsters continue to have their way, the country has recorded about $900,000 as loss in five months due the activities of the perpetrators in collaboration with their foreign counterparts. These loses occur almost all the time. According to communications and security experts, the loses could be avoided if the nation institutes functional regulatory measures to check the telecom industry.
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To that effect, Parliament has passed into law the Electronic Communications (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which is expected regulate the activities of various telecommunications stakeholders. This law will streamline telecommunications activities with specific regards to prohibiting the possession of unregistered SIM cards in the country. With this welcome development, it then becomes a criminal offence to posses an unregistered SIM card which has been used in the past to defraud the state.
The Bill which has been passed into law has provided a regulatory mechanism for clearing house services through the establishment of an Interconnect Clearing house (ICH) to address interconnection in the Communication sector.
This ICH would be operated by Afriwave Telecoms Ghana and is expected to route both local and international traffic which is currently being done by the respective telecommunication companies in the country. Government strongly believes that the Interconnect Clearing House will help the country fight the problem of SIM box fraud. Telecom operators are expected to adhere by this new arrangement until the ICH facility becomes fully operational within the next six months for a complete switch over.
SIM box fraud has done a lot of damage to the Ghana’s economy, as it has deprived the country and telecommunication companies’ revenues amounting to billions of cedis.
SIM box fraud is a situation whereby the fraudsters install SIM boxes which allows calls from international destinations to be diverted to Ghana as local calls and at a cheaper rate. This then charges international carriers 19 cents per minute of call as against the local interconnect charge of four pesewas thereby depriving the nation of revenue.