Vol. 5 Num 591 Thu. January 26, 2006  
Letters to Editor

Mobile owner identification

At long last, we see an initiative from the government, as Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission has asked cell-phone operators to collect personal details of existing subscribers or snap connections in case of failure. Well, better late than never! We just hope the concerned authorities maintain and continue strict follow-ups in this regard. I quote verbatim from my letter to the DS on this issue written in July-05: "... cannot help but wonder about the large proportions of indiscriminate issuance of mobile-phone ownership, specially in case of the pre-paid connections, which is really a pressing issue. Even in our neighbouring country, all the Mobile Service Providers follow the system of demanding photo-id (as opposed to photo only), i.

e. Driving Licence, Passport, etc. to issue a new SIM. At this stage, our government should compel all the mobile operators of the country to review all such connections by setting up separate teams, if necessary, which these companies can easily afford as they are earning huge revenues. And after that, each mobile phone company should reconfirm the Home Ministry on such Identification status. At present, when a miscreant makes a threat on a person's mobile the respective Company's enquiry hot-line says they do not maintain the particulars for pre-paid numbers or that, they will only give out such particulars on request from the police! ...". Now, the Mobile Service Providers shouldn't be allowed to shun their responsibilities by saying: "... it is almost impossible to gather personal details of the existing prepaid customers as the operators do not maintain any contact with them ...". All service providers have to be directed to send letters to the addresses provided on their Application Forms and/or to call each number. They have to straighten things out.