By Juliet Umeh

LAGOS—Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, Professor Umar Danbatta, yesterday, disclosed that the Nigerian telecommunications industry has lost $3 billion to call-masking.

He said those responsible for the nefarious act had managed to use a small box, called SIM box, that enables them to bypass legal call routes without getting tracked.

He, however, promised that the commission would soon round them up, having acquired a technology that would detect wherever SIM box was used in the country.

Danbatta, who made the disclosure in Lagos at the 85th telecoms consumer parliament in Lagos, said Sim box was one of the most prevalent frauds in the telecom industry, causing it to lose an estimated $3 billion revenue.


He said the enormity of loss the menace has caused the industry was the main reason the commission deliberately themed this edition of TCP “Overcoming Challenges of Call Masking /Refiling: Task Ahead for the Telecoms Industry.”

Danbatta, who was represented by Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, Mrs. Felicia Onwegbuchulam, described call masking/refilling as a situation where international call is terminated in Nigeria as a local number with ulterior motive of profiting from price differentials between international and local calls termination rates.

He said: “Call masking is a worrisome development that constitutes serious challenges not only to the telecom industry but also possess serious security threats to the entire country.

“As a commission, we have discovered that call masking is being perpetrated with small movable devices called SIM box, which are electronic boxes loaded with SIM Numbers.







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