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DoT tasks C-DoT with the responsibility of creating a central equipment identify register

February 12, 2018

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has assigned the work of creating a central registry of stolen and lost devices to the Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DoT). Further, the central equipment identify register (CEIR) will allow telecom carriers to share information on lost devices so as to prevent them from getting reactivated with a new SIM on a different network. This is expected to help consumers safeguard private data on lost mobile phones and other devices. The project undertaken by DoT aims to protect consumer interest, curtail counterfeits, discourage mobile phone theft, help detect cloning of phones and allows lawful interception.

C-DoT has been directed to prepare a project report and inform the DoT on the fund requirement for the pilot. Based on the pilot, a project report will be prepared for a pan-India roll out.Moreover, the pilot project by C-DoT in the Maharashtra telecom circle covering all telecom service providers is targeted to be completed by March 31, 2018. Earlier, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNLs) IT project cell in Maharashtra was to start a pilot programme on CEIR in July 2017 but it failed to start any work. Thus, the decision to implement CEIR through BSNL has been revised and now given to C-DoT.

It is learnt that each mobile network has an equipment identity register, classifying permitted International mobile equipment identity (IMEIs) under a white list. The mobile phones that don’t conform to the local regulations are listed on what is called a grey list, while those that are stolen or lost are on a black list.Under CEIR, all operators will share these lists with each other, ensuring that a phone registered on one network does not get activated on another through illegal means.IMEI also helps in tracking a phone and calls by law enforcement agencies. The DoT is making efforts to make tampering of IMEI number a punishable offence with up to three years of imprisonment. While the department has barred operators from providing services to mobile phones with fake IMEI numbers, they face a problem in identifying handsets with duplicate IMEI numbers.



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