Department of Telecom Launches Sanchar Saathi Portal for Tracking Lost or Stolen Mobile Phones Across India
The Department of Telecom (DoT) has introduced the Sanchar Saathi portal, enabling individuals to block and track their lost or stolen mobile phones throughout India. This initiative aims to enhance user safety and combat mobile phone-related fraud. The portal includes features such as Central Equipment Identity Register (CEIR), Know Your Mobile, and TAFCOP, providing comprehensive solutions to address the rising trends in cyber fraud.
1. Blocking and Tracking Lost or Stolen Mobile Phones: The Sanchar Saathi portal facilitates the blocking and tracking of lost or stolen mobile phones. Users can visit the CEIR section of the portal, undergo identity verification, and submit an undertaking. Subsequently, the portal will collaborate with law enforcement agencies and telecom service providers to block the reported devices.
2. Genuineness Verification of Used Devices: The Sanchar Saathi portal allows individuals to verify the genuineness of second-hand mobile phones before making a purchase. Through the Know Your Mobile facility, users can authenticate the authenticity of the device, ensuring a safer buying experience.
3. Collaboration with WhatsApp: The government has engaged with WhatsApp, leading to the deactivation of services associated with mobile phone numbers engaged in fraudulent activities. OTT platforms, including WhatsApp, actively cooperate in deregistering users identified as fraudsters. This collaborative effort contributes to customer safety and combatting fraud.
4. Preventing Unauthorized Mobile Phone Usage: The Sanchar Saathi portal includes the Telecom Analytics for Fraud Control and Prevention (TAFCOP) facility. This feature enables users to identify any unauthorized mobile numbers associated with their name without their knowledge or permission. By providing visibility and control, the portal helps prevent misuse of personal information.
5. Central Equipment Identity Register (CEIR) Technology: Developed by C-DOT, the CEIR technology detects and blocks cloned mobile phones across all telecom networks. By disclosing the International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number, a unique 15-digit identifier for mobile devices, during the sale, telecom networks can verify the authenticity of mobile phones and prevent the entry of unauthorized devices.
6. Successful Pilot Programs and Collaboration: C-DOT has conducted successful pilot programs in select telecom circles, including Delhi, Maharashtra, Karnataka, and North East. Recently, the CEIR system aided Karnataka Police in recovering and returning 2,500 lost mobile phones to their owners. While Apple already offers a tracking system through Apple ID, the Sanchar Saathi portal focuses on addressing issues faced by Android mobile phone users.
Conclusion: The launch of the Sanchar Saathi portal by the Department of Telecom provides individuals in India with a comprehensive platform to block, track, and verify lost or stolen mobile phones. This initiative aligns with the government's vision of prioritizing user safety and curbing cyber fraud. With features such as CEIR, Know Your Mobile, and TAFCOP, the portal empowers users to safeguard their mobile devices, enhances transparency in mobile phone transactions, and aids in reducing mobile phone-related crimes and smuggling.