PTA to launch DIRBS to counter illegal/smuggled mobiles

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) is all set to introduce a new system called Identification, Registration and Blocking System (DIRBS) to counter the increasing number of mobile phones snatching and stealing incidents and mobile smuggling in the country,

The step has been considered a positive measure by the Authority to safeguard the threat of stolen phones being used in criminal and terrorism activities.

An official told APP that PTA announced DIRBS back in September this year claiming that the system was capable enough to block the import and trade of non-compliant mobile devices as well as to detect fake, stolen or snatched mobile handsets working in the country.

The newly devised DIRBS works with quite a simple procedure. To detect non-compliant devices, IMEI number of the handset will be used along with other mobile identifying tools available in the system. The suspected IMEIs will be blocked permanently.

PTA is reportedly working on another system known as Device Verification System (DVS) that may be launched prior to the introduction of DIRBS. The DVS will be made available through DIRBS website, smartphone app and SMS to check the validity of the handset. The system may be used to verify device before paying for.

The DIRBS and DVS would become helpful not for general public but for law enforcement agencies to encounter the criminal activities involving stolen or illegally imported mobile phones.

On the other hands, major smartphone brands in Pakistan like Samsung, Huawei and QMobile would feel a sigh of relief from the huge loss what they have faced through smuggled smartphones being sold in the market.