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Business News of Thursday, 29 October 2015

Source: GNA

Afriwave Telecom to fight Sim-box fraud

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The National Communications Authority (NCA) has awarded a license to Afriwave Telecom to operate as an Interconnect Clearing House to help fight sim-box fraud and improve revenue collection and management in the telecom sector.

The company, which employs a wide range of technologies in its operations including GSM, GPRS, LTE, Wi-max and CDMA, becomes the first such operator in the country.

Afriwave Telecom was given the nod in February this year to offer interconnect clearing house services after it was selected from four other applicants as the most qualified firm to deliver on the license, Mr Donald Gwira, the Afriwave Telecom Director of Corporate Affairs, said in a statement to the Ghana News Agency, on Wednesday.

The license mandates the company to provide a common, independent mechanism for monitoring, routing, billing and settlement of local and international interconnect traffic for existing and future telecommunications operators in the country.

The company said it had engaged world-class partners and industry experts to help bolster its team of specialists to deliver on the license.

According to the statement, the NCA and the Parliamentary Select Committee on Communications had toured the site housing the equipment, when the Chief Executive Officer of Afriwave Telecom, Mr Philip Sowah, assured the group that the company was ready to deliver on its mandate once it received the go-ahead from the NCA.

“We have engaged world-class partners and industry experts to help bolster our team of specialists to deliver on the license, which will be rolled out in two phases,” Mr Sowah said.

The first, he explained, is termed Phase 1A has two objectives of providing enhanced services to monitor and validate government revenues in accordance with Act 786 (International incoming tariff) and Act 864 (Communications Service Tax) to help government realise its revenue.

The second objective, he said, would deal with the provision of anti-fraud management and revenue assurance systems, noting that the company had engaged SIGOS (formerly Meucci) with the expertise in real time monitoring of SIM-box fraud.

“We will step up the number of test calls from the current 120,000 to a minimum of 400,000 per month,” he said.

This should help arrest the sim box menace, which is costing both the government and the telecos millions of Ghana cedis,” he added.

The role out of phase 1B, which would be after 1A would provide other value added services like Equipment Identity Register Services for the blocking of stolen handsets, a common platform for independent international wholesale carriers to deliver calls and the capability of routing of local interconnect calls.