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Vodacom has introduced a self-RICA feature, letting you register your new SIM card from the comfort of your home.
You can access the feature through the My Vodacom App, which uses Vodacom’s self-service chatbot TOBi.
RICA requires those buying a new SIM card to provide identification and proof of residence. Customers usually do this at the mobile provider’s store. However, the new self-RICA feature lets Vodacom customers do this through their app.
Vodacom highlights the feature as a way to enable South African residents to maintain social distancing.
According to Vodacom, the process involves taking a picture, scanning a new prepaid SIM card, an ID document (or passport for foreign nationals), and then recording a video with a unique PIN as proof of your identity.
AI and biometrics compare these identities and then verify them with Home Affairs, the company says.
“Once verified, the customer can insert the SIM in any cellphone where they will receive a welcome message from Vodacom with their new cellphone number,” Vodacom said in a statement.
To access TOBi on the My Vodacom App, select the “Chat to TOBi” option in the app.
RICA’s status in South Africa
RICA will likely be amended in the future after a 2019 ruling by the Gauteng High Court found that some parts of RICA are unconstitutional. However, the ruling focused on the communication interception rights of government.
As a result, South African residents will still need to register their SIM cards according to RICA.
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