Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications on August 11 warned of strict action against mobile phone service providers who sell or distribute SIM cards without verifying and recording the identity of buyers.
The ministry said in a press release that “some locations” operated by Viettel (Cambodia) Pte Ltd – the local affiliate of the Vietnamese military-owned Viettel, which trades as MetFone – and Smart Axiata Co Ltd – a subsidiary of Kuala Lumpur-listed Axiata Group Bhd – were recently found to be in violation.
This continued practice, it said, runs counter to the Inter-Ministerial Circular No 001 dated February 28, 2012 and the directives of the ministry and Telecommunication Regulator of Cambodia.
The ministry said it would issue an immediate cease and desist order to MetFone and Smart, “to strengthen order in the telecommunications sector and national security”.
Any individual consumer found to have purchased a SIM card without proof of identification will implicate the operator, whether they conspired in the sale or not, it warned.
Violators face the suspension or revocation of their mobile service provider licence and a freeze on all requests, among other types of penalties as stipulated in Article 78 of the Law on Telecommunications, the ministry said, adding that all persons involved will be held liable under criminal law.