In pursuit of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s vision of a digitally secure India, Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw, Minister of Communications, Railways, and Electronics & IT, inaugurated the Sanchar Saathi portal.
This groundbreaking initiative introduces three key reforms to fortify the PM’s vision:
- CEIR (Central Equipment Identity Register): A comprehensive system for blocking stolen or lost mobile devices, ensuring that compromised devices cannot be misused.
- Know Your Mobile Connections: Empowers individuals to ascertain the mobile connections registered in their name, allowing them to maintain control over their telecom portfolio.
- ASTR (Artificial Intelligence and Facial Recognition powered Solution for Telecom SIM Subscriber Verification): A cutting-edge solution to detect and prevent fraudulent subscribers, shielding users from identity theft and other related frauds.
Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw emphasized that user safety is a pivotal component of the forthcoming Telecom bill. The Sanchar Saathi portal encompasses various modules, including CEIR and TAFCOP, designed to provide an array of services and ensure robust security in the telecom sector.
Understanding Your Mobile Connections:
- Individuals can have a maximum of 9 mobile connections across all Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) in India, with the exception of J&K, Assam, and North Eastern states, where the limit is 6.
- Mobile connections beyond this limit will be automatically disconnected by the Service Provider.
- To review your registered mobile connections, visit [portal link].
- Enter your mobile number and login using the OTP sent to that number.
- The portal will display a list of your mobile connections, offering options to mark them as ‘Not mine’ or ‘Not required’.
Reporting Fraudulent Mobile Connections:
Identifying Illegitimate Connections:
- To report any connections you suspect to be fraudulent, follow the same steps as above.
- Review the connections and select ‘This is not my number’ or ‘Not Required’ as appropriate.
- Click ‘Report’ to submit your request.
- Reported connections will undergo re-verification by the service provider.
- This involves comparing the subscriber’s photograph and Proof of Identity (PoI) document with existing records to confirm identity.
- The subscriber may use any specified PoI document for this process.
- Verification must be conducted within the specified timelines.
Mobile Connection Transfer Policy:
- Mobile connections are non-transferable. Name changes among blood relatives/legal heirs require consent from the existing subscriber and submission of a new Customer Acquisition Form (CAF).
The Sanchar Saathi portal exemplifies a significant stride towards enhancing user safety and security in the digital era. By empowering individuals with knowledge and control over their mobile connections, the portal ensures that users can confidently navigate the telecom landscape in India.
In a significant stride towards safeguarding Indian telecom users from fraudulent activities, Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw, Minister of Communications, Railways, and Electronics & IT, launched the Sanchar Saathi portal. This portal, aligned with the Digital India vision, introduces transformative reforms to fortify user safety and security.
Empowering Telecom Users:
The Sanchar Saathi portal, available at https://sancharsaathi.gov.in, empowers users by offering the following services:
- Check Registered Connections: Users can ascertain the mobile connections registered in their name, ensuring transparency and control over their telecom portfolio.
- Report Fraudulent or Unrequired Connections: The portal allows users to report any connections they suspect to be fraudulent or unnecessary.
- Block Stolen/Lost Mobiles: In case of stolen or lost mobile devices, users can submit IMEI numbers on the portal for verification. Once confirmed, the system blocks the stolen devices from Indian networks and assists law enforcement agencies in tracing them.
- Verify IMEI Genuineness: Before purchasing a mobile phone, users can verify the authenticity of its IMEI number.
Key Modules of the Sanchar Saathi Portal:
Centralized Equipment Identity Register (CEIR):
- Allows users to report stolen or lost mobile devices by submitting IMEI numbers.
- Integrates with Telecom Service Providers and Law Enforcement Agencies to block stolen devices and trace their use.
- Offers device unlocking when the stolen device is recovered.
Know Your Mobile (KYM):
- Facilitates checking the genuineness of a mobile device’s IMEI number.
Telecom Analytics for Fraud Management and Consumer Protection (TAFCOP):
- Enables users to verify the number of mobile connections registered in their name using paper-based documents.
- Users can report fraudulent connections and block unnecessary ones.
- Triggers a re-verification process for reported connections, leading to terminations when fraudulent activities are identified.
ASTR (Artificial Intelligence and Facial Recognition powered Solution for Telecom SIM Subscriber Verification):
- Utilizes AI and facial recognition for identifying SIMs issued with fraudulent/forged documents.
- Analyzes connections with paper-based KYC.
- In the first phase, analysis of over 87 crore mobile connections was conducted using the Param-Sidhhi Supercomputer.
- Multiple cases of a single photograph used to obtain hundreds of connections were detected.
- A total of 40.87 Lakh suspected mobile connections were identified.
- 36.61 Lakh connections have been disconnected after verification.
- 40,123 Point of Sales (PoS) involved in selling such mobile connections have been blacklisted.
- Over 150 FIRs have been lodged across India.
- Details of disconnected numbers have been shared with banks, payment wallets, and social media platforms for account disengagement.
The Sanchar Saathi portal is a testament to India’s commitment to a secure and user-friendly telecom ecosystem, further reinforcing the nation’s digital journey.
Blocking and Tracing Lost/Stolen Mobile Phones with CEIR
CEIR (Central Equipment Identity Register) is a citizen-centric portal developed by the Department of Telecommunications, aimed at tracing lost or stolen mobile devices. It also enables the blocking of these devices across all telecom operators in India to prevent their unauthorized use. When someone attempts to use a blocked mobile phone, its traceability is generated, aiding in recovery efforts. Here’s how users can block and later unblock lost or stolen phones using CEIR:
How to Block a Lost/Stolen Phone:
File a Police Report: In case of a lost or stolen mobile phone, file a report with your local police station and retain a copy of the report as evidence.
Get a Duplicate SIM Card: Contact your telecom service provider (e.g., Airtel, Jio, Vodafone/Idea, BSNL, MTNL) to obtain a duplicate SIM card for the lost number. This is essential, as you will need this number (OTP will be sent to this number) when submitting the request to block your phone’s IMEI.
- Note: SMS functionality on re-issued SIM cards is typically enabled 24 hours after activation as per TRAI regulations.
Prepare Documents: Gather necessary documents, including a copy of the police report and a valid identity proof. You may also provide the mobile purchase invoice.
Submit Blocking Request:
- Visit the CEIR User Block Request Form.
- Fill out the request registration form for blocking the IMEI of the lost/stolen phone and attach the required documents.
- After submission, you will receive a Request ID, which can be used to check the status of your request and for unblocking the IMEI in the future.
Through State Police: If you receive a message indicating that a request already exists for your IMEI and mobile number by State police, it means the request is already in the CEIR system through state police.
After the successful submission of the blocking request, your phone will be blocked within 24 hours, rendering it unusable on any network in India. However, please note that this does not prevent the police from tracking the lost/stolen phone.
When to Unblock Your Phone’s IMEI:
You should only unblock the IMEI of your phone if it has been found and is back in your possession.
Here’s how to unblock it:
Report to Local Police: Inform your local police that you have found your lost/stolen phone.
Submit Unblock Request:
- Visit the CEIR User Unblock Request Form.
- Follow the instructions to submit the required form.
- Note: If you initially registered the blocking request with State Police, you will need to approach State police to register the unblocking request for your phone.
Once the unblock request is submitted and processed, the IMEI will be unblocked, allowing you to use the device again.
Check Mobile Device Validity Before Purchase:
It’s essential to verify the validity of a mobile device before purchasing it. The IMEI number, which can be found on the mobile packaging box or on the mobile bill/invoice, can be used for this purpose. Here are three ways to check the IMEI:
- Dial *#06# on your mobile device to display the IMEI number on the screen.
- Send an SMS with the text “KYM <15-digit IMEI number>” to 14422 from your mobile.
- Download the KYM app from the Play Store (for Android) or the App Store (for iOS).
By checking the IMEI, you can avoid purchasing mobile devices that are blacklisted, duplicated, or already in use by others.
For more details, visit the CEIR website.
For more information, visit https://sancharsaathi.gov.in