Earlier this month, Chinese telecom companies began sending out notices requiring real-name registration for all mobile numbers in compliance with Anti-terrorism law. And this time, they are really serious about it.
While the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) has set a deadline of December 31, 2016 to have 95 percent of phones across the country registered, it is possible that providers like China Telecom, China Unicom and China Mobile could begin shutting down service for users who have not complied before then.
The real-name registration law applies to all phone numbers in China.
While the real-name registration policy was put into effect years ago, it is inconsistently enforced. According to TechInAsia, it is estimated that 100 million people have yet to tie their phone numbers to their real identities.
This isn't the first time China has required real-name registration for technology platforms. In 2012, Weibo users were required to tie their account with a phone or ID number. And earlier this year, Alipay and WeChat announced that users would be required to link their accounts to either an ID or mainland bank account number by July 1.
How to Register Your Phone Number in China
So how to complete the real-name registration or find out if you've already registered? Bring your passport (or valid ID) and SIM card and head over to your local mobile business hall. From there, you'll be required to either fill out a real-name registration form or verify your information.
[Image via China Daily]