NBTC to launch final registration campaign
The national telecommunications regulator will launch a 40-million-baht public awareness campaign next month to accelerate prepaid mobile phone users to register their numbers and personal information by the July deadline.
"This will be the last campaign to remind unregistered prepaid mobile users to register their personal information or they will not be able to use the mobile phone service," said Korkij Danchaivichit, the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission's (NBTC) vice secretary-general.
After July 31, those failing to register subscriber information or who provide incorrect information will have their mobile voice and data services terminated.
Korkij: Confident of achieving goal
Mobile operators have been facing a fine of 80,000 baht a day by the NBTC if they activate prepaid subscribers' SIM cards without registration since Feb 1.
Of Thailand's 105 million mobile subscribers, 90 million or 85.7% are prepaid. Only 18 million prepaid users have properly registered their numbers.
"The campaign is aimed at almost doubling the registration rate to 500,000 numbers per day in May, up from the current 260,000," said Mr Korkij.
"If the registration number can be reached, we're confident of achieving our goal to migrate all prepaid users to our network system," he said.
Mr Korkij said the NBTC was in talks with the Interior Ministry to allow prepaid users to register their numbers at 7,000 offices of the Subdistrict Administrative Organisation nationwide.
"Prepaid users should be able to register at the 7,000 offices next month," he said, adding that the service will be provided through a web-based application for greater convenience and to help speed up the process.
Mr Korkij said five major mobile operators — AIS, DTAC, True Move, CAT Telecom and TOT Plc — will be subject to a fee of five or six baht per number if prepaid users register at any of the 7,000 offices.
The registration measures are essential to governing the mobile industry and preventing unregistered phone numbers from being used to commit crimes.
The cabinet has approved the promotion of prepaid registration to the national security agenda, he said.
There are 50,000 service points to allow prepaid users to register their numbers via the regulator's web-based app, Mr Korkij added.
Existing prepaid customers can now register at modern trade shops and department stores including Tesco Lotus and Big C. New prepaid customers can register their numbers at 7-Eleven convenience stores.
Mr Korkij admitted that the NBTC might not be able to persuade all existing 90 million prepaid users to properly register by the July 31 deadline because the regulator found that at least 10 million prepaid numbers were inactive.
"We are trying to minimise the impact on consumers as much as possible," said Mr Korkij.