Here’s why your SIM card might be switched off this week

It’s likely that some people will find themselves unable to communicate over the weekend after the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) directed mobile operators in the country to switch off all SIM cards that do not comply with the regulator’s Simcard Regulations with immediate effect.

Following up to a directive first put out in May 2018 that requires all mobile network operators to register all SIM cards prior to activation, the CA has directed all service providers to switch off all SIM cards that cannot meet this condition and those attached to it. This is after the CA conducted a forensic audit that revealed the market still has plenty of active SIM cards with anomalies – anomalies that mobile operators had reportedly claimed have been ironed out following the CA’s directive to do so back in May.

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While the major reason that many SIM cards will be switched off is the outright lack of registration data, there are other related cases that might also leave you unable to share your weekend moments due to lack of network access. So, just in case you become a victim, know it is because of any of the reasons below:

  • Your SIM card has not been registered in any capacity
  • Your SIM card is partly registered
  • Your SIM card is improperly or un-procedurally registered
  • Your SIM card is fraudulently registered
  • Your SIM card is registered to multiple people

I have been loyal to Safaricom for more than a decade and while there were some moments I’ve flirted around with the likes of Airtel and Orange back in the day due to their cheaper call and data rates, one thing that always kept me unconvinced about the duo is handling of their SIM cards. On multiple occasions, I was able to buy either SIM card and went on to use it for as long as I can remember without providing any registration details to anyone. I even know of people who made a living out of hawking Orange SIM cards back in 2014,  but be warned that this activity now attracts a fine of half a million shillings or 12 months in prison or both.

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Although Safaricom SIM card holders might not be greatly affected by the issue of not being registered, things like fraudulent, improper, unprocedural, or even multiple registrations are still bound to affect some.

Download full press release (PDF)

Source: CA

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