The Nigerian Communications Commission, (NCC), has announced that from July 2021, Nigerians will have to submit the International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number of their phones to the Commission. The Commission made this known in its Revised National Identity Policy for SIM Card Registration, published on the 11th May 2021, stating that the directive was given by President Muhammadu Buhari.
According to NCC, President Muhammadu Buhari has directed that the Device Management System (DMS) should be implemented in three months. In the DMS, the IMEI numbers on the phones of all Nigerians will be collated in a database for use when necessary.
The Commission also said the aim of the exercise is to cut back on counterfeit mobile phone market, discourage mobile phone theft, enhance National security, reduce rate of kidnapping, protect consumer interest, increase revenue generation for the government, quell the use of stolen phones for crime, and facilitate blocking or tracing of stolen mobile phones and other devices, and this can be achieved through the deployment of Device Management System (DMS). The implementation of a Device Management System will enable keeping records of IMEI of all registered phones, and so IMEI’s that have been reprted stolen or illegal will be shared through the DMS to all the operators and service providers.
The IMEI of a phone is also referred to as the fingerprint of the phone. Each phone has it embedded on it from production. It is made up of 15 digits and is unique, and this makes it possible for a missing phone to be tracked and located, irrespective of the cellular number on it.
Story: Ene Ken-Yawe
Pictures: NCC, Gearbes
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