UCC grabs 6 with sim boxes, wins social media case

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Uganda Communications Commission [UCC] compliance and Investigations team, working together with Airtel (U) Ltd and Police on Wednesday arrested six people with sim boxes.

Picked from Masanafu in Lubaga Division in Kampala, the suspects are currently in custody at Wandegeya Police Station and will be produced in court today.

Sim boxing is where an individual uses technology to illegally terminate international calls, UCC said in a statement.

“This is usually done in a box where sim cards are inserted through technology, enabled to interfere or otherwise get into licensed operator’s systems to allow illegal termination of calls.”

Through this illegal act, government has lost a lot of revenue.

Abdu Salam Waisswa, the Head of Legal Affairs Uganda Communications Commission, told press the suspects are wanted for illegally terminating international calls thereby causing loses to telecoms firms.

Waisswa said one of them was working with Airtel and will now answer for electronic fraud and operating a telecommunication system illegally.

All the suspects are graduates of Information Communication and Technology.

On June 6, Gerald Ssemwanga, a convict of illegal installation of broadcasting equipment aka BIZINDAALO without a licence, was sentenced to 2 months in jail on each count which will run concurrently.

Yesterday, a case filed by Legal Brains Trust Ltd challenging government decision to suspend use of social media on 18th February 2016 was dismissed.

Justice Stephen Musota of the High Court division maintained that government’s decision wasn’t illegal, as social media isn’t the only media of communication.

UCC defended decision, arguing suspending social media and Mobile money was necessary to secure against potential incitement of violence and criminality.