Nigerians have been advised not to link their National Identification Numbers (NINs) to another person’s Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards, according to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).
In a statement released on Monday, NCC spokesperson Ikechukwu Adinde said the commission issued the warning during its third Telecom Consumer Town Hall on Radio (TCTHR) program, which was broadcast live on Human Rights Radio, 101.1 FM in Abuja.
Speaking during the radio programme focused on ‘the Benefits of NIN-SIM Integration’, Efosa Idehen, NCC’s director, consumer affairs bureau, said telecom consumers should not allow another use their NINs to register on another person’s SIM.
Compliance, according to Idehen, would shield the NIN’s owner from any obligations or bad repercussions resulting from the usage of another person’s SIM.
“If the person, whose SIM is linked to your line uses his own SIM to commit crimes or any form of atrocities, it is easy to be traced to you, and then, you will be dealt with because the SIM is linked to your NIN,” he said.
Consumers in Nigeria and the diaspora, particularly from the United Kingdom (UK), Russia, and neighboring countries such as Ghana, among others, phoned and got clarifications on the ongoing NIN-SIM integration in Nigeria during the radio program’s phone-in section, according to the statement.
“Discussions largely focused on educating consumers on NIN and its purpose, process of obtaining NIN, why consumers are being asked to submit their NIN to their Mobile Network Service Providers, the benefits of NIN-SIM linkage, the relationship between NIN and Bank Verification Number (BVN) registration, the step-by-step approach to linking NIN to SIM, and the role and uses of Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) *346# in the NIN-SIM integration activities,” the statement reads.
NCC’s director of public affairs, Ikechukwu Adinde, was represented in the studio by Omoniyi Ibietan, assistant director in the department, and Nnenna Ukoha, deputy director, NCC’s projects department, according to the statement.
Others include Mistura Aruna, NCC’s head, consumer information and education, Kayode Adegoke, head, corporate communication, National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), as well as representatives of mobile operators, including MTN, Airtel, Globacom, and 9Mobile.
The deadline for NIN-SIM integration, according to the NCC, is still October 31, 2021.