NATCOM’s new security strategy
Telecom regulator in Sierra Leone will team up with the country’s intelligence service and security sector to introduce a new security strategy, the harmonized emergency toll free number, proposed to be 112, by end of the year.
The National Telecommunications Commission, NATCOM, is collaborating with the ministry of communications, the office of the National Security (ONS) and the police to launch a national emergency toll free number because of what it said was the cumbersome nature of different service providers using different numbers for different emergency purposes.
Chairman of NATCOM, Siray Alpha Timbo, told the fourth consumer parliament in the eastern headquarter town of Kenema at the weekend that “obviously our timely intervention stems from our compliance with international best practice.”
Recently, the security intelligence office at state house and the telecom regulator instituted the mandatory SIM card registration policy to discourage all telecom related crimes, save consumers from potential virtual threats and the country from losing badly needed revenues to unregulated calls.
“We cannot ignore…initiatives aimed at safeguarding the public against unwarranted acts such as threats, hate messages, extortion, kidnapping, money laundering, and drug trafficking,” said Mr. Timbo, noting that over eighty percent of sim card owners are now registered.
Meanwhile, the cyber crimes prevention taskforce, comprising personnel of NATCOM and the police, has played a measurably remarkable role in minimizing the rampant abuse of sim cards.
The consumer parliament, which has been held in Freetown in the Western Area, Makeni in the northern province, Bo in the south and lastly Kenema in the east, is a platform where consumers meet face-to-face with service providers and make their comments, suggestions, proposals and recommendations for a common benefit.
It is one of NATCOM’s innovative strategies in ensuring fair play, enhance knowledge-sharing, accountability and transparency vis-à-vis the rights and obligations of all stakeholders, namely the operators, consumers and the regulator.
By Bhoyy Jalloh
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