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SIM Card Buyers Need to Produce ID Proof from 1 September

Telecom service providers will require customers to present their ID cards and have their information verified on the spot by second-generation ID card reader when selling SIM cards through various physical sales channels from 1 September 2015. Meanwhile, "old cards" without real-name registration will be registered retroactively by various means.

According to the announcement, customers need to present their second-generation ID card at sales offices or third-party dealers for real-name registration before 31 August. Users without making real-name registration after expiry date will be restricted and even suspended of telecom services as stipulated in national regulations. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), however, has made it clear that service providers are not allowed to increase existing customers’ responsibility when making retroactive registration.

MIIT requires basic telecom service providers to register retroactively existing customers -- who have been using their services before 1 September 2013 but without making real-name registration -- when providing new services or replacing the sim cards. But they are not allowed to increase their customers’ responsibility, forcing them to subscribe to more expensive service plans when making retroactive registration.

Earlier this year, MIIT, the Ministry of Public Security and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce jointly launched the campaign against "black cards" in 2015.  According to the campaign timetable, verification by second-generation ID card readers is due to start from 1 September. 

The campaign requires telecom service providers to be fully equipped with second-generation ID card readers at various physical sales channels to verify users’ resident identity documents and automatically enter users’ identification information to prevent using false identity information to register.

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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