It has been almost a year since President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. signed the SIM Registration Act, but text scams are still rampant, senators complained this Tuesday.
This is the reason why the Senate Committee on Public Services, led by Sen. Grace Poe, called for an investigation.
Even senators who attended the hearing, such as Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri and Senate Majority Leader Joel villanueva, said they were sent text scams.
Villanueva indeed filed a complaint, but so far, nothing has happened to his complaint.
Villanueva said that when the law was passed, there was a provision for user-friendly reporting.
Poe also insisted that telcos should have a dedicated hotline for complaints.
In total, the National Telecommunications Commission said, there are 118,908,469 registered SIMs.
However, the NTC said some registrants used fake IDs.
So far, the number of text scam complaints received by the NTC has reached 45,697.
During the hearing, the senators also listed the recovered SIM cards in the pogo raids in Las Piñas, which reached 80,000.
Text scams still rampant despite SIM Registration law
nbi Cybercrime Division Chief Jeremy Lotoc said SIM registration is now a business.
POGO hubs buy registered SIMs and use them in scam operations.
“Yung mga registered SIM card rampant yung selling sa Facebook… May mga huli kami nagbebenta siya ng SIM cards and then may kita siya don na P40 to P50 per SIM card. Kung mahirap nga ang buhay mo definitely kakagatin po nila yun,” he said.
So Poe insisted the sellers should be sued and the implementing rules and regulations of the SIM Registration Act should be fixed.
Last month, the National Privacy Commission (NPC) cautioned against selling registered subscriber identity module (SIM) cards and highlighted potential penalties, including fines and imprisonment.
As the sole data privacy authority mandated to enforce the Data Privacy Act of 2012, the NPC underscored the gravity of registering SIM cards to sell them.
They warned about the “serious ramifications” of such actions. They expressed concern over certain individuals who, acting as agents of malicious entities, are enticing individuals with monetary offers averaging around P1,000 for registered SIM cards.