The Corporate Services Executive of MTN Nigeria, Akinwale Goodluck, has announced the decision of the company to discontinue SIM swaps by proxy with effect from June 7.
Mr. Goodluck said this in a statement on Thursday in Lagos. He said that after June 7, customers who wished to swap or replace their SIM cards as a result of their phones being stolen, destroyed or misplaced must do so in person. According to him, the decision was taken in order to protect customers’ data and preserve the overall integrity of the SIM swap process.
“In recent months, unscrupulous elements have started to exploit the proxy SIM swap process and there have been incidents of unauthorised people fraudulently obtaining SIM cards belonging to others. “The implication of this decision is that customers will now have to appear in person at the service outlets nearest to them to request and obtain new SIM cards.
“Such requests will be treated promptly after proper ID validation from the SIM registration database and upon presentation of valid identification such as ID card, international passport or driver’s licence,” he said.
Mr. Goodluck added that the customer would also be required to answer security questions before a new SIM card would be issued.
He called on the company’s subscribers to urgently register their SIMs in view of the June 30 deadline or risk suspension of their mobile lines. Mr. Goodluck urged customers to register all SIM cards in their possession including those in phones, laptops, POS machines and all other SIM-enabled devices.
The Customer Relations Executive of MTN, Akin Braithwaite, said that the organisation attached great seriousness to the issue of customer and data security.
Mr. Braithwaite said that a significant number of SIM swap-related fraud were committed by people who were very close to the victims and had access to their personal data. He said that the new requirement that customers should carry out the SIM swaps in person would check the activities of fraudsters in this regard.