To prevent the issuance of ‘illegal’ subscriber identity modules (SIMs) Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has started implementation on the plan under which those purchasing SIMs will have to go through facial verification. Three telecom companies have already been made to pay Rs23.5 million in fine for issuing illegal SIMs, according to the PTA documents. Authority’s all efforts to prevent this seems useless because mobile phones operators have found new ways. Now PTA has made it compulsory for both the seller as well as the purchaser to have their faces scanned besides biometric identification at the time of purchase of a SIM. The employees of cellphone companies are involved in the issuance of illegal SIMs, PTA officials told. PTA reports revealed that the silicon thumb impression is used for the purpose. And as always is case that illegal SIMs are used in incidents of terrorism and other anti-social activities, the Authority has blocked over 526, 000 million such SIMs during the last three years. According to the reports over 360, 000 national identity cards (NICs) have been blacklisted when it was found out that illegal SIMs were issued against them Almost 21 employees of different franchises have been suspended in connection with this offense and PTA has forwarded 29 such cases to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA). While companies like CM Pak and Ufone have imposed a fine of Rs100 million and Rs50 million respectively.