The why, what, who, where, when, and how of RICA

RICA stands for the Regulation of Interception of Communications and provision of communication-related information Act. It's a law passed by the South African government last year that requires all cellphone users to register their numbers.

The aim of this legislation is to help law enforcement agencies to identify cellphone users and track criminals using cellphones for illegal activities.

All contract and prepaid cellphone numbers and data SIM cards must be registered by 30 June 2011: 

  • New cellphone numbers must be registered in order to be activated
  • Existing cellphone numbers must be registered to ensure that the number does not get disconnected
  • Businesses are required to nominate an authorized representative who will register all the company SIMs on the account in the company's name

The deadline for registrations, which must be done in person, is 30 June 2011. You can register at any Cell C store or participating outlet. Just be sure to take your SIM card, green barcoded ID book, and a proof of address (any document that includes your name and address such as a bank statement, municipal rates account, lease agreement, etc) with you.

If you live in an informal residence you must provide a letter and/or affidavit of the address of a local school or church where you receive your post. This proof must be on an official letterhead or have the stamp of the school, church or retail store. All of this information will be kept completely confidential.

For Non-South African Citizens

In order for non-South African citizens to register for RICA, you need your passport, SIM card and proof of physical address. Any one of the following is sufficient for proof of physical address: 

  • Residential or employment address
  • Bank statement
  • Water and lights account
  • Phone account
  • TV license
  • Lease agreement
  • Vehicle lease agreement


A step-by-step guide

RICA is easy with Cell C. Just follow these three steps:

Step 1:
Make sure you have the following items with you:

You need to bring the following details with you to register:

  • barcoded green identity book
  • SIM card
  • proof of physical address (such as a bank statement, retail or water and lights account)

As proof of physical address, customers who live in an informal residence must bring a letter from their nearest school, church or retail store where they live or receive post, OR a template can be obtained from any Cell C store. An affidavit with a police station stamp will also be accepted.

Step 2:
Go to your nearest Cell C store to register.

Step 3:
Insert your SIM card into your cellphone and then carry on as normal. That's all it takes.

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