Are you comfortable with cellphone companies collecting and keeping your biometric information? Today, amaBhungane will be making oral submissions on draft regulations issued by ICASA which proposes that mobile network operators collect biometric data when selling SIM cards.
The regulations propose that biometric verification take place when SIM swap requests are made – ostensibly, to guard against unauthorised SIM swaps, which can be used to commit banking and other types of fraud.
AmaBhungane is opposed to these regulations because (1) biometric verification carries inherent risks that data can be misused, (2) this is not a permanent solution as biometrics can be faked and (3) that there are easier, cheaper, better methods to prevent fraudulent SIM swaps.
The expanding acceptance of biometric identity verification is a concerning instance of “surveillance creep”, where the public are made to accept ever-increasing intrusions on their privacy in exchange for promises of security.
Read full submission here