Press Release
February 2, 2022

Senate ratifies bicam report on SIM card registration bill

The bill that would curb fraud and other crimes aided by subscriber identity module (SIM) cards is now closer to becoming a law.

This, as the Senate ratified Wednesday, (Feb. 2) the bicameral conference committee report on the disagreeing provisions of Senate Bill No. 2395 and House Bill No. 5793, or the proposed SIM Card Registration Act.

Sen. Grace Poe, chairperson of the Senate committee on public services who led the upper chamber's contingent to the bicam, said the conferees were able to reconcile several conflicting provisions of the two legislative proposals.

"The bicameral conference committee agreed to use the House version as the working draft but made use of a lot of the Senate provisions," Poe reported to her colleagues during Wednesday's hybrid plenary session.

Among the agreements settled by the bicameral panel, according to Poe, is to mandate all public telecommunications entities (PTEs) to require the registration of SIM cards as a prerequisite to their sale and activation.

Similarly, all social media networks must also require the real name and phone number of users upon creation of account, the bicam report stated.

All existing SIM card subscribers with active services shall register within 180 days from the effectivity of the proposed law. PTEs will be authorized to deactivate SIM card numbers that have not been registered within the prescribed period.

Poe said that lawmakers have clarified that the sale of SIM cards to foreign nationals shall be allowed, provided that they comply with certain requirements, such as their passport and proof of address in the Philippines, among others.

Data collected from registration shall be forwarded and kept by the concerned PTE to a centralized database, which shall strictly serve as a register for the processing, activation or deactivation of subscription, and shall not be used for any other purpose.

"Whatever information obtained in the registration process cannot be disclosed to any person except in compliance with any law authorizing disclosure, such as in the case of the Data Privacy Act; or in compliance with a court order or any other legal process; or with the written consent of the subscriber. No waiver of absolute confidentiality is allowed," Poe assured.

She said the bicameral conference committee likewise added an important provision mandating PTEs and social media providers to keep relevant data and information for 10 years from the time the end-user deactivates his or her mobile number or social media account.

"We hope that by legislating this measure, we would be able to eradicate mobile phone, internet or electronic communication-aided criminal activities. This has been a long time coming but I hope that the passage of this bill will result in a safer and more secure mobile-use and cyberspace here in our country," Poe said.

Bicam report sa SIM card registration bill pinagtibay ng Senado

Malapit nang maging batas ang isang panukala na susugpo sa panlilinlang at iba pang krimen gamit ang subscriber identity module (SIM).

Ito'y matapos ratipikahan ng Senado noong Miyerkoles, (Pebrero 2), ang bicameral conference report sa mga pinagtagpong mga probisyon ng Senate Bill No. 2395 at House Bill No. 5793, o panukalang SIM Card Registration Act.

Ayon kay Sen. Grace Poe, Senate public services committee chair, napagkasunduan ng mga kasama sa bicam ang ilang magkasalungat na probisyon ng dalawang legislative proposal.

"Napagkasunduan sa bicameral conference committee na gamitin ang bersyon ng Kamara bilang working draft subalit mas ginamit ang maraming probisyon ng Senado," pahayag ni Poe sa kanyang ulat sa hybrid plenary session.

Ilan sa mga napagkasunduan sa bicameral panel ayon kay Poe ay ang mandato na lahat ng public telecommunications entities (PTEs) ay inoobligang magparehistro ng SIM cards bilang prerequisite sa kanilang pagbebenta at activation.

Bukod diyan, nakasaad din sa bicam report na lahat ng social media network ay dapat hingan ng tunay na pangalan at phone number ng mga user sa pagbuo ng account.

Lahat ng umiiral na SIM card subscribers na may active service ay kailangang magparehistro sa loob ng 180 araw mula sa pagiging aktibo ng naturang batas.

Ang PTEs ay pinahihintulutang mag-deactivate ng SIM card numbers na hindi narehistro sa loob ng itinakdang panahon.

Sabi ni Poe, nilinaw ng mga mambabatas na pinapayagan din ang pagbenta ng SIM cards sa mga dayuhan basta't sumusunod sila sa ilang requirement tulad ng passport at pruweba ng kanilang address sa Pilipinas, bukod sa iba pa.

Ang mga datos na nakolekta mula sa pagpaparehistro ay ipapasa at itatago ng PTE sa isang centralized database na magsisilbing rehistro para sa proseso, activation o deactivation ng subscription at hindi dapat gamitin sa anumang layunin.

"Anumang impormasyon na makukuha sa registration process ay hindi maaaring ibunyag sa sinuman maliban na lang kung pagsunod sa anumang batas na nag-aatas sa pagbunyag nito, tulad ng Data Privacy Act'; o pagsunod sa court order o anumang legal process; o written consent ng subscriber. Hindi pinapayagan ang waiver of absolute confidentiality," pagtitiyak ni Poe.

Idinagdag din ng bicameral conference committee ang isang mahalagang probisyong nag-aatas sa PTEs at social media providers na itago ang mga makabuluhang datos at impormasyon sa loob ng 10 taon mula sa panahon na nag-deactivate ang end-user ng kanyang mobile number o social media account.

"Umaasa kami na sa pamamagitan nito, masasawata na ang mga mobile phone, internet o electronic communication-aided criminal activity. Inaasahan nating magkakaroon ng mas ligtas na mobile use at cyberspace sa ating bansa," diin ni Poe.

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