The New Prepaid Determination 2013

Under the Telecommunications (Service Provider - Identity Checks for Prepaid Mobile Carriage Services) Determination 2013 (the Determination), mobile service providers are required to verify a customer's ID when they purchase or activate a mobile prepaid service.

The Determination was made in November 2013 by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and it replaces the previous 2001 Determination.

You can read more about the ACMA's powers to make the Determination here.

The Determination was amended in December 2014 to include two additional methods for verifying customer ID:

  • confirming a customer's existing prepaid mobile account
  • sighting identification at the mobile service provider's shopfront at the time the service is activated at the shopfront

Information for mobile prepaid customers

When you purchase or activate a mobile prepaid service you will be required to provide some personal information and also have that information verified by your mobile service provider. Depending on how you make your purchase and the arrangements your service provider has in place, the process for collecting and verifying your information will vary.

The information you will need to provide:

If you are an individual, you will need to provide the following information at the point of sale:

  • name and residential address
  • number of other activated mobiile prepaid services (if any) supplied to you
  • intended use of the service e.g. government, business, personal, charity (if known)

               OR

You will need to provide the following information at the time of activation:

  • name and residential address
  • date of birth
  • intended use of the service e.g. government, business, personal, charity (if known)

If you are purchasing on behalf of an entity (business or organisation), you will need to provide the following informaiton at the point of sale:

  • name and business address of the entity
  • ABN/ACN/ABRN
  • name of the individual making the purchase on behalf of the entity and evidence of their authority to do so
  • intended use of the service e.g. government, business, personal or charity (if known)
  • number of other activated prepaid mobile services supplied to the entity

                OR

You will need to provide the following information at the time of activation:

  • name and business address of the entity
  • ABN/ACN/ABRN
  • name and date of birth of the individual activating on behalf of the entity
  • intended use of the service e.g. government, business, personal or charity (if known)

Verification of your evidence of identity

Once the above information has been provided to your service provider at either the point of purchase or time of activation, the service provider will be required to verify that information. 

How your mobile service provider verifies your information will depend on the method of purchase used as well as their own methods for verification (as allowed under the Determination).

Verification at the point of purchase:

If you pay by credit or debit card and have fewer than 5 mobile prepaid services activated, you will not be asked for additional evidence of identity documents. If you have 5 or more services activated you will be required to show additional evidence of identity documents. 

If you pay by a method other than credit or debit card, you will need to provide additional evicence of identity documents. For example, you could show  one category A document, such as a  tertiary student ID card, driver's licence or other government-issued licence or permit, passport or birth certificate OR you could show two category B documents, including a Medicare card, credit or debit card or rates statement. For a complete list of category A and B evidence of identity documents (contained in schedule 2 of the Determination) click here .

OR

Verification at the time of activation:

Your service provider may use a range of approved methods to verify your evidence of identity documents at the point of activation. For example, they may check the name and unique details on a government-issued identity document such as a Medicare card, driver's licence or passport. 

Or they may verify the details of an existng post-paid or prepaid  mobile account you already have e.g. your home phone or other mobile service.

Or they may confirm your email address if it ends in .edu.au or gov.au.

Or they may confirm your bank account details.

Or they may deliver your service by secure courier or registered mail service to confirm your address.

You can read more about prepaid ID checking and watch the ACMA's explanatory video on the ACMA's website. 

Obligations on mobile service providers

The ACMA provides comprehensive information for mobile service providers on their website outlining obligations in relation to:

The ACMA also has a video explaining these obligations and you can read and download the Determination in full here.

 

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