Accra, Jan. 21, GNA – Afriwave Telecom has stepped up efforts aimed at reducing Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) box fraud and its related impact on telecommunications and the country in general.
The move is being facilitated by the Interconnected Clearing House (ICH), which has been tasked by government to, among others, independently monitor the flow of traffic so that the Government would be able to adequately derive its revenues from the telecommunication industry.
This was made known at a session on the organisation’s Knowledge Series held in Accra to equip editors of various media houses with the requisite knowledge to facilitate their understanding on the processes and progress of the ICH since it was contracted by the National Communications Authority (NCA) in 2015.
Mr Donald Gwire, the Corporate Affairs Director of Afriwave, speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said the ICH was mandated to fight SIM-box fraud and would also do sim identification registration to sanitise the SIM service and ensure SIM cards were properly authenticated.
He said currently, authenticating sim card registration was quite challenging in the country so they had put in place measures to reverse the problem.
« We’ll link up with other agencies, including the National Identification Authority, Passport Office, Electoral Commission, National Health Insurance Authority, and Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority to make sure that when you register a SIM, you are who you are, so that you can’t use any false ID, » he said.
The ICH, among others, is to independently validate NCA’s surcharge for international incoming traffic and NCA license revenue, as well as to ensure co-ordinated efforts in tackling SIM-Box fraud with the Mobile Networks.
The ICH also provides geo-location solutions which basically expose the equipment and operators behind SIM-box frauds in the country.
International telecommunication companies would get directly connected to all mobile telecoms in the country through the ICH without having to connect to the TELCOs individually.
The ICH has been connected to all the various networks in the country, hence, when commenced, all calls would go through the ICH platform before going through to the telecommunication networks so that all SIM-boxes would be detected and blocked.
Majority of the projects to be executed by the ICH are to run concurrently; hence an integrated Multi-Project Management/Solution Architect Environment is being setup with particular projects at various stages of completion.
Afriwave Telecom, established in 1998, was engaged by the National Communications Authority (NCA) and mandated to provide data to the NCA for policy making.
On the recent controversy over operations of Afriwave Telecom in relation to tax revenue assurance for the NCA, Mr Gwire explained that while the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) was in charge of tax revenues, Afriwave only ensured revenue assurance for the NCA.
He said this was a by-product of its activities so that the NCA would receive its due from the telecom networks.
« Last year, Parliament decided to separate the two: GRA will do tax revenue, while ICH does revenue assurance for the NCA, » he said.
« It would not be a monopoly, other companies could also come on board. We monitor the traffic that comes, in independently, then we advice the NCA, » he said.