ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has launched an automated Lost and Stolen Device System (LSDS) for blocking the lost, stolen and snatched mobile phones.

The new system will provide ease and facilitation to the users who want to get a mobile phone blocked in case it has been stolen, snatched or lost. Complainants can file a request with the PTA for blocking the IMEI of such a handset to prevent it from potential misuse.

Around 15,000 cases of stolen mobile phones are reported on a monthly basis in the country. As the number of mobile phone users has reached around 180 million and teledensity above 84 per cent of the country’s population, the cases of missing mobile phone sets are on the rise in the country. A senior official of the PTA said that under the LSDS any mobile handset could be blocked within two hours with the help of an automated system – through an online entry by the user — and the unblocking process too could be completed online.

The LSDS is an automated system and integrated with the PTA’s Device Identification, Registration and Blocking System. A stolen mobile phone will be blocked within 24 hours of reporting after verification.

Under the system the users will have to lodge a blocking request with the PTA through its online Complaint Management System (CMS) available at the website of the telecom sector regulator. The users can also contact PTA Consumer Support Centre to lodge the complaint.

At the same time, if the phone has been recovered, the complainant will have to follow the same procedure for unblocking it through the CMS and mention his complaint reference number along with other mandatory detail given to him earlier for blocking of his mobile phone.

The user will receive an SMS on the registered number once the mobile phone is unblocked.

Currently stolen, snatched and lost mobile phones can be blocked or unblocked by calling the PTA’s toll free number, through email and at the Citizen Police Liaison Committee (CPLC), Karachi.

However, after the launch of the new system, all these manual based mediums for blocking or unblocking of phones cannot be used anymore.

Special arrangement has been made with the CPLC as Karachi reports the highest number of stolen, snatched and lost mobile phones.

Published in Dawn, April 8th, 2021

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