Strict Subscriber Verification Norms to Affect Telecom Profits

The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) indicated that strict subscriber verification norms and the high rates for erecting cell towers will cause a major reduction in the profits of mobile telecom companies.

According to COIA Director General Rajan S Mathews, the lack of infrastructure facilities in rural area combined with stringent customer verification norms will affect the mobile penetration in most regions in India.

Telecom operators have to spend around Rs 600-700 for the verification of a single customer, which is very costly. Moreover, the state governments levy taxes on cell towers. These factors may reduce the profit margins of companies which are already reporting losses, reports COAI.

Recently, an enquiry by Mumbai police revealed that almost 60 percent of prepaid SIM card in Mumbai were procured using fake documents. COIA’s suggestion to government in this regard is to use Unique Identification card as the benchmark for customer verification.

“Government is trying to see what they can do. The Department of Telecom (DoT) and UID authority may coordinate in this regard for optimising the verification,” Mathews said, , reports

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