DTH companies against changes to KYC norms for STBs

DTH Operators have shared their views on TRAI’s consultation paper on the issue.


MUMBAI: DTH operators believe that there is no need to change the KYC process for set top boxes (STBs) as the current process is well-equipped to meet the requirements and the DTH industry is already adhering to a comprehensive KYC process, which has been working effectively till date.

The DTH operators have commented on TRAI’s consultation paper on ‘KYC and e-KYC of DTH Set Top Boxes’. Dish TV commented, “We are of the strong opinion that initial KYC done by the company is adequate enough and no further KYC is required thereafter.”

“Broadcasting of channels through DTH involves unidirectional communication only i.e. broadcast through satellites and does not involve any inherent risk or misuse by the customers. In view of the same, introducing any additional measures for KYC other than what is being currently followed, would only aggravate the financial stress on the industry and will consequently lead to higher prices for the consumer, without yielding any benefits,” Bharti Telemedia commented.

It further explained that during the provisioning of a new connection, a CAF is filled by the customer which captures details like registered telephone number of the subscriber, Name And Address for installation etc. These details are then entered into the systems. Only after these processes are completed, an engineer is assigned, who visits the customer premises for installation and demonstration. Thus, in any case, the present system already meets the KYC requirement of capturing the customer’s identity and address.

One of the objectives stated by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, in its reference to TRAI, is to stop the illegal smuggling of set top boxes to other countries. The operators believe that even this objective cannot be met by introducing additional KYC requirements.

“Collecting proof of identity (Pol) and Proof Of  address (PoA) documents, as an alternate to Aadhaar, will add to the inconvenience and cost  of approximately 100 million subscribers (includes  private DTH and DD Free Dish) and  potentially another 100 million future subscribers. Conducting such a massive exercise for weeding out a miniscule set of smuggled boxes would be an unfair burden for all stakeholders,” said Tata Sky.

On the question of whether location-based services (LBS) needs to be incorporated in the DTH set top boxes to track its location, Dish TV replied, “This issue has been dealt at length and for the stated reason we strongly oppose this suggestion.”

“We submit that there is no need to introduce the LBS requirement for the DTH set top boxes. To the best of our knowledge, there is no such implementation of LBS for DTH services anywhere in the world,” opined Bharti Telemedia.

Tata Sky believes that location-based services (LBS) - developing and deploying STBs fitted with a LBS solution would make the box expensive and would add to the cost borne by the subscriber. “Also, there would be several cases of non-receipt of signals on account of equipment malfunction or other reasons and not necessarily  due  to the STB having been smuggled out,” the company said.

Replying to TRAI’s question on whether one-time KYC is enough at the time of installation or verification is required to be done on periodic basis to ensure its actual location? Bharti Telemedia commented, “We firmly believe that the current one-time KYC at the time of installation is more than adequate as it duly meets the essence of any KYC process. Therefore, there is no need to introduce a system of re-verification.”

Further it said, “At the cost of repetition, periodic verification in case of DTH industry has no relevance as the services provided over DTH platforms pose no threats or risks as these services are unidirectional and are made available transparently to the customer. When the verification activity yields no productive outcome, there is no rationale in terms of mandating a periodic re-verification exercise as the same will simply translate into a sizeable financial burden on the DTH industry as well as wastage of resources for a non-productive exercise.”

According to Bharti Telemedia, re-verification will be a daunting and insurmountable task due to the complexities involved in taking customer consent and appointment or unavailability of customer due to various reasons. “It should be considered that it will cause huge inconvenience to users and may raise their apprehensions about the services. Therefore, we recommend that there should not be any change in the existing processes and the system of re-verification should not be introduced,” the company said. 

Latest Reads

Dish TV India launches an entire new range of ‘Smart Connected Devices’

MUMBAI: Strengthening its technology product portfolio, Dish TV India Ltd., world’s largest single-country DTH Company, today launched a complete range of smart devices, an internet enabled Android based HD Set Top Box and Voice enabled Alexa Built-in smart kit.

DTH DTH Operator
Dish TV India to launch hybrid set-top box with Amazon Prime Video

MUMBAI: Dish TV India Limited, the world’s largest single-country Direct-To-Home company, today announced that it has collaborated with Amazon Prime Video to offer Prime Video app to its Dish TV and d2h subscribers on its soon-to-be-launched hybrid set-top box.

DTH DTH Operator
d2h skill introduced on Amazon Alexa in India

MUMBAI: With an aim to further enhance the TV viewing experience for its d2h customers, Dish TV India Limited, the world’s largest single-country DTH Company has launched a Skill for Amazon Alexa in India. Say, “Alexa, enable d2h” and start using the skill to explore a vast world of entertainment,...

DTH DTH Operator
Dish TV’s OTT Platform Watcho launches two new original series

MUMBAI: In line with its commitment to provide unique and engaging content to the viewers, Dish TV India Limited announced the launch of two new content series on its OTT platform ‘Watcho’. A paranormal investigation series ‘Dark Destination’ premiered on 13th September, 2019 and a wild comedy tale...

DTH DTH Operator
Dish TV to introduce Android set top box

Amid the ongoing flux in media and entertainment industry, major direct-to-home (DTH) operator Dish TV India has planned the launch of its android set top boxes in the next few weeks, according to a PTI report.

DTH DTH Services
Dish TV India launches ‘Shorts TV Active’ on DishTV and d2h platforms

MUMBAI: Keeping up the promise of providing unique content and quality entertainment to its subscribers, Dish TV India Limited, world’s largest single-country DTH Company recently announced the launch of a new value added service ‘Shorts TV Active’ in partnership with ShortsTV, the world’s only TV...

DTH DTH Operator
DishTV strengthens presence in West Bengal with special offers and packages

In a bid to make the most of the festivities, Dish TV India Ltd, the world’s largest single-country DTH Company, today announced line-up of special offers and packages for its existing customers in West Bengal. The new offers by Dish TV seek to extend maximum benefits to the customers.

DTH DTH Services
Sun Direct offers 155 channels for Rs 130 network capacity fee

DTH operator Sun Direct is now allowing subscribers to select up to 155 channels for a monthly network capacity fee of Rs 130/- plus applicable taxes.

DTH DTH Operator
KYC imperative to curb smuggling of DTH STBs outside India: IBF

Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) has shared its view on the consultation paper by TRAI on ‘KYC of DTH Set Top Boxes’. The association is of view that there is an absolute and an imminent need for introduction and proper enforcement of meaningful KYC or e-KYC stipulations of DTH STBs.

DTH DTH Operator

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories