President Rodrigo Duterte is being urged to veto the proposed SIM Card Registration bill by Internet, Information and Communications technology (ICT) rights advocacy group Democracy.Net.PH.
Aside from the SIM card registration requirement, the bill also stipulates that when users create accounts on social media platforms, they must disclose their true name and identity, in addition to their phone number.
The bill’s provisions, according to the ICT group, “offer no real solution to these problems and only limit our right to privacy and expose us to risk by consolidating personally identifiable information on a centralized server.”
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Democracy.Net.PH also argues that it will get rid of the “additional security that anonymity gives us, especially for celebrities, public figures, influencers, activists, human rights defenders, victims of domestic abuse and violence against women and children.”
In other countries where a similar law was implemented, the ICT group says it was “proven” to be inefficient and ineffective.
Once implemented, Senator Grace Poe says all SIM card users in the Philippines should register within 180 days upon effectivity of the law.
As of writing, over 26,000 respondents have signed the petition on change.org.