Cairo on 22 July 2020
Within the framework of the keenness of the National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA) to regulate and govern the telecommunications market, combat the trade of smuggled and banned telecom equipment and the devices that do not conform to the approved standards as well as enhance the quality of telecom services, the NTRA has, in coordination with the Telecommunications Police Department, launched a number of judicial apprehension campaigns in Greater Cairo and Alexandria against telecom device outlets and stores. These campaigns aimed to sequester unlicensed and banned wireless telecom devices used to boost mobile networks due to their non-conformity with the technical specifications.
It should be noted that the Quality of Service reports issued by the NTRA indicated a decline of the mobile service quality indicators in several regions. In addition, the NTRA received complaints from customers in these regions about interference in mobile communications due to the use of improperly-installed mobile network boosters that do not comply with the specifications. In light of the aforementioned, the NTRA has been coordinating efforts with the Ministry of Interior to launch extended judicial apprehension campaigns to reduce the spread of these equipment.
After taking all needed measures, a judicial apprehension force was deployed by the Telecommunications Police Department in coordination with the National Security Agency, accompanied with the NTRA’s judicial inspectors and officers as they inspected a number of telecom equipment outlets. The necessary legal actions have been taken against the violating stores selling banned mobile network boosters. This resulted in the sequestration of a large number of these devices, in addition to a number of antennas, exchanges, and mobile lines without users’ personal data. Moreover, 14 sequestration reports were released for 14 accused persons who were arrested.
Eng. Hossam El-Gamal, the NTRA’s Executive President, stated that launching such campaigns was necessary to combat the proliferation of counterfeit and unlicensed service boosters, hence reduce the negative impacts of these devices on the quality of telecom services.
Furthermore, Eng. El-Gamal highlighted the need to continue launching these deterrent campaigns nationwide during the upcoming period, underscoring that the NTRA has been keen to coordinate efforts with mobile companies operating in Egypt to ensure the continuous improvement of the quality of services provided to citizens.
These campaigns are part of a series of campaigns to be executed in the coming period with the aim of eradicating the usage of banned mobile network boosters. Such goal, if attained, will directly impact on the high quality of mobile services provided to users. Relatedly, the NTRA coordinated with mobile operators to provide the approved technical solutions and alternatives that the users can use, in case they suffer from poor mobile signal, ensuring that the level of quality of services should be enhanced.