With less than a month left before the SIM registration deadline on July 25, text scammers are increasing their efforts to defraud unsuspecting mobile phone users in the Philippines.
According to the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), scammers have devised new methods to trick users into clicking on fake links, re-registering their SIM cards, or revealing their personal and financial information.
Some of the common scams include:
- Pretending to be e-wallet providers and asking users to re-register their SIM cards to activate their e-wallets.
- Sending messages that claim users have won prizes or money and asking them to call a certain number or visit a certain website to claim them.
- Sending messages that warn users that their SIM cards will be deactivated if they do not register them by the deadline and providing a fake link to do so.
- Sending messages that ask users to update their bank account details or verify their identity by sending a code or a photo of their ID card.
The DICT warns the public not to fall for these scams and to register their SIM cards before the deadline to “cut the avenue of defrauding.”
The agency also advised users to:
- Ignore and delete any suspicious or unsolicited messages from unknown numbers.
- Never click on any links or attachments in such messages.
- Never share any personal or financial information with anyone over the phone or online.
- Report any scam attempts to the authorities or the telecoms providers.
The law aims to prevent criminals from concealing their identities and using SIM cards for text scams, bank fraud, misinformation, and other illegal activities.
As of June 28, 2023, the DICT has recorded more than 100.96 million SIM cards registered, out of an estimated 168 million in circulation.
The DICT said it is working with the telecoms providers, PLDT, Globe Telecom, and DITO Telecommunity, to facilitate the registration process and ensure compliance with the law.
Users can register their SIM cards through official channels:
- SMART/TNT/PLDT Home WiFi: simreg.smart.com.ph
- GLOBE: new.globe.com.ph/simreg
- DITO: https://digital.dito.ph/pto/download/app
SIM owners can also register through the new eGov PH Super App.
Those who fail to register their SIM cards by July 25 will face deactivation of their SIM cards and possible penalties under the law.