National Law Requires ID Cards before Purchasing Mobile SIM Cards
Starting next week a national law will take effect that will require Chinese citizens to present identification when buying a mobile phone number from phone operators. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology is coordinating with the three major mobile providers in the country to start implementing a real name system that requires users to provide personal information when buying pre-paid SIM cards.
This new measure is to protect legitimate rights of subscribers and to safeguard the security of the network information. As of the moment there are more than one million phone users in China, this including land lines and mobile phones. The three major providers, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom are busy preparing for the implementation of the new policy and will be informing their current subscribers through text messages, pamphlets and posters. Several stores and newsstands are selling off their remaining mobile SIM numbers this week before the policy will start next week.
This measure will make sure that no personal information will be disclosed for misuse. The ministry also regarded privacy registration and mobile and internet services providers might face fines from 10,000 yuan up to 30,000 yuan if they are found to have disclosed, destroyed, changed or sold customers personal information.
The real name registration of users will be done in two phases, registration of old users will be completed in the span of three years while new users will start real name registration starting in September.