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A List of Mandatory ‘real name’ prepaid SIM card registration Country?

In increasing number of countries require registration from mobile phone users for security reasons, visitors purchasing prepaid SIM card is no exception. It requires consumers to provide proof of identity in order to activate a prepaid mobile SIM card. Even through for the security reasons, the process may still be cumbersome. In some countries like China, people may even worry about whether the privacy data will be handled properly by the telcos and government.

 Here is a list of countries that require registration, and points to note, so that you can prepare well before your trip.  


Where to registerWhat to BringNotes
ArgentinaYESPoint of salePassportProcedure varies slightly per operator
BrazilYESPoint of salePassport
CanadaNOPoint of salePassport
ColombiaYESPoint of SalePassport /Address
ChileNO – for stays shorter than 30 days and using a device purchased overseasonlineCopy of passport


Where to registerWhat to BringNotes
EgyptYESPoint of salePassport
MoroccoYESPoint of salePassport
KenyaYESPoint of salePassport
NigeriaYESPoint of SalePassport
South AfricaYESRICA-accredited agent (i.e., most point-of-sales)Passport
/Accommodation address


COUNTRYCompulsory Registration?Where to registerWhat to BringNotes
AustraliaYESOnline through telco’s websitePassport /Australian addressPassport or driving licence should be presented to sales point
ChinaYEStelco-branded store or service pointPassport* proper termination of mobile service before leaving the country by visiting a telco-branded service point is required
**Also, Facial recongition will be required to register new SIM cards for now on.
Hong KongNO
IndiaYESPoint of Salepassport / visa page /passport photos/ proof of addressAll document includes original & copy
IndonesiaYEStelco-branded storepassport
JapanYES (for voice enable SIM cards)Japan does not permit the sale of most voice-enabled SIM cards to visitors.
MalaysiaYESPoint of Sale
New ZealandNO
PhilippinesNO (legislation pending)There is pending legislation to require IDs but it has not yet been passed.
SingaporeYESPoint of SalePassport
South KoreaYESPoint of SalePassport
TaiwanYESPoint of SalePassport-Second ID may be required such as drivers license,ID card etc.
ThailandYESPoint of SalePassport
VietnamYEStelco-branded storePassport


AustriaYEStelco-branded store/
partner shops/
post offices/
online verification (selected passport holders only)
passportextra money for activation surcharge (for doing so at some partner shops or post offices)
BelgiumYESPoint of Salepassport
Czech RepublicNO
FranceYESPoint of Salepassport ordriving licence
GermanyYEStelco-branded store (for larger telcos like Vodafone, O2, or T-mobile)/
agency-appointed stores (for smaller telcos/MVNOs)/
independent mobile phone stores that sell SIM cards/
online video verification (for selected passport holders only)
passport or national ID card
german address (accommodation’s address will suffice)
Registration is not required when SIM card is purchased but required for activation and use.Most stores will only take requests to register SIM cards purchased from them. They may reject requests activating SIM cards for different stores or levy surcharges.
Results of online verification may take days to process; in-store verification usually instant.
GreeceYESPoint of Salepassport or national ID card
HungaryYEStelco-branded storepassportprepaid subscribers are required to have their subscriptions verified annually to keep prepaid SIMs active.
ItalyYESPoint of Salepassport
NorwayYESPoint of Salepassport
PolandYESPoint of SalepassportIndependent electronics stores may sell SIM cards but they won’t register them and will hence remain deactivated
RussiaYESPoint of Salepassport with VISA and stamp
SlovakiaYESPoint of Salepassport
SpinYESPoint of Salepassport
SwitzerlandYESPoint of Salepassport
TurkeyYESPoint of SaleIMEI details of phoneOnly 1 SIM can be linked per deviceIn practice, this concerns users who will stay longer than 120 days as there is a grace period. However, a user may encounter problems if he/she visits Turkey again in the future and wants to use the same device.
United KingdomNO

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