Subscribers’ Perception of SIM Card Retrieval: Implications on Criminality and Behaviour in Calabar Municipality, Cross River State

Eraye C. Michael, Eke C. Chinwokwu, Silvia K. Arop


The study is concerned with Subscribers Identification Module (SIM) retrieval in Calabar Municipality. The general objective of the study was to examine the subscriber perception of the factors responsible for SIM card retrieval and its implication on criminality and behaviour. To achieve the general objective, the study purposively elicited data via questionnaire and in-depth interview from 387 MTN, Globacom, Airtel, and Etiselat network subscribers and staff of telecom companies. Descriptive statistics was employed to analyze quantitative data generated via questionnaire and qualitative data was subjected to content analysis. Finding revealed that loss of phone with the SIMs, damage to SIMs, stolen phones with the SIMs and faulty SIMs were factors associated with SIM card retrieval. Findings further revealed that subscribers prefer to retrieve their previous SIMs than buying new ones; so as to reconnect with their friends and loved ones and to prevent criminals who have stolen or snatched their phones from using the lines to commit crime and implicate them. It was also discovered that Female more than male subscribers are more likely to have their SIMs retrieved because they are more victims of stolen Phone/SIM and damaged SIMs. It was established that the prevalence of SIM retrieval depicts an upsurge in crime such as theft and the snatching of valuables, insincerity in our society and carefree attitude among subscribers. We recommended among others, that the government should address the problem of unemployment which is fingered as the major cause of property crime in Nigeria and that there is need for value reorientation. We also propose that network providers should come up with packages that will make SIM retrieval less cumbersome and provision of more durable SIM cards for subscribers.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n10p620

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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