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TRAI floats consultation paper on KYC of DTH set top boxes

Stakeholders can submit their comments by 19 August

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MUMBAI: The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) issued a consultation paper on 'KYC of DTH Set Top Boxes’ in order to finalise a suitable mechanism for the same. The comments of various organisations, industry bodies, DTH operators, standardisation bodies, STB manufacturers, software providers, stakeholders, experts and individuals have been invited by 19 August 2019.

The authority received a reference from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) in 2018 wherein TRAI had been requested to give its considered recommendations on desirability or otherwise of KYC for set top boxes in DTH services and, if desirable, a process for the same.

Later, MIB provided information in another letter to TRAI regarding the safeguards that can be applied for restricting smuggling of DTH equipment illegally to other countries.

“Filling of KYC form and verification of AadhaarcCard may be mandatory for any customer purchasing DTH equipment. In order to check the location in accordance with customer ID /Card ID, location-based services need to be made active in DTH set-top-boxes,” the letter read.

One of the suggestions also included that MIB and TRAI may prepare KYC verification process to ensure that STB used by Indian DTH operators are only working in India.

DTH broadcasting service was opened in the country in 2001 and the government issued the 'Guidelines for obtaining license for providing direct-to-home (DTH) broadcasting service in the same year. These guidelines prescribe the eligibility criteria, the procedure for obtaining the licence to set up and operate DTH services in the country.

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