Real name system to help protect privacy 2006-10-11 14:59:09

    BEIJING, Oct. 11 -- Requiring mobile phone users to register with their real names will help protect citizens' privacy, says a commentary in Beijing News. An excerpt follows:

    While bringing much convenience, mobile phones also lead to the interference with people's rights. Junk short messages, fraud messages and various advertisements have disturbed our lives.

    To reduce illegal activities in the use of mobile phones, the Ministry of Information Industry recently verified that a management method on short message services will be unveiled within this year. Mobile phone users will have to register with their real names.

    Illegal text messages have become a public hazard. Despite public complaints, it is difficult to investigate or safeguard one's legal rights and interests because the messages were sent from anonymous mobile numbers. The existence of large numbers of anonymous mobile phone users has led to loopholes in protecting consumers' rights and interests.

    Statistics from the Ministry of Public Security show that most criminals are using anonymous pre-paid mobile phones, and illegal activities conducted with anonymous mobile phones have become a factor affecting public security.

    At present many countries, such as the Republic of Korea, Thailand, Australia and Japan, have implemented the real name registration system. This will certainly reduce intervention of private rights through messages and effectively investigate infringers.

    Some worry that registration with real names will affect privacy as telecommunication operators will have mobile users' personal information.

    But anonymity cannot protect privacy. Infringers using anonymous mobile phones can wantonly infringe our rights. The uncontrolled development of anonymous mobile phones will only erode credibility resources in our society.

    People's worries about the safety of their personal information are actually an expectation for institutional regulation on operators' obligations and responsibilities.

    Mobile phones under real names will better protect citizens' rights and interests. Of course, this requires mobile service operators to strictly protect users' information. There should be clear rules about the protection of consumers' information and an accountability system.

    (Source: China Daily)

Editor: Yan Liang
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