User’s ID number now required to recharge prepaid mobile phones

Updated 26 July 2012

User’s ID number now required to recharge prepaid mobile phones

The Saudi Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) has announced that entering a user’s ID number, together with a prepaid card number, would be mandatory to charge a cell phone’s credit or transfer money from the user’s credit to that of another subscriber starting July 31. In a press statement, the telecom regulator said the new procedure aims to end the practice of anonymous persons misusing SIM cards.
In the new system, a consumer should enter his ID or Iqama number immediately after entering the prepaid card number to recharge the phone’s credit. It would not be possible to recharge without entering the ID number. The telecom regulator warned citizens and expatriates against using any prepaid SIM card with an unknown identity.
“The information supplied by subscribers while buying a SIM card must be correct and updated. It would not be possible either to charge or transfer credit if the users do not enter the same ID or Iqama number that they had furnished while subscribing to the service,” the statement said, adding that the new procedure is part of the commission’s efforts to contain the spread of illegal prepaid cards.
The regulator urged those who want more information or details about this to contact the service provider through its customer care offices, contact centers or website. The commission disclosed that it has completed all the necessary procedures and arrangements to enforce this decision.
A few months ago, Abdullah Al-Darrab, governor of CITC, reiterated the commission’s resolve to go ahead with introducing this system. He also noted that the telecommunications companies in the Kingdom had asked for a time period to introduce the system in order to make the necessary changes in their system to support the regulation.
The CITC chief said that anonymous SIM cards were posing a severe threat to the security of the nation and the society as well. He urged all citizens and foreigners in the Kingdom not to buy such SIM cards to avoid the complications and dangers that might be involved in them. He also said that buying anonymous SIM cards is a clear violation of the law and that violators would face penal action.


Snap happy: Every face tells a story for Saudi photographer

Updated 58 min 59 sec ago

Snap happy: Every face tells a story for Saudi photographer

  • “There is something majestic about people’s faces, their expressions,” says Abdullah Al-Joghiman

DHAHRAN: Saudi portrait photographer Abdullah Al-Joghiman has a message for everybody: You are beautiful just the way you are.

If you don’t believe him, let him take your picture.

“Even if you’re not photogenic, or think you look bad in pictures, I can always turn your frown upside down,” he said.

Al-Joghiman is a full-time financial analyst for the Saudi Electricity Co., but allows plenty of time for his work as a freelance portrait and event photographer on the side.

“I started off doing landscape photography, but I love portrait photography more. Landscape photographers have to travel a lot, and I wasn’t able to commit to that lifestyle for many reasons. But since I was a child I’ve always loved taking pictures of people. There is something majestic about people’s faces, their expressions,” he told Arab News.

The 34-year-old was born in Al-Hofuf and now lives in Dammam, but his passion for photography has taken him all over the Kingdom and to other areas of the world.

Al-Joghiman at the 2018 Middle East Film and Comic Con in Dubai. (Supplied)

Al-Joghiman has been asked to shoot for local events such as Gamers’ Con and internationally at conventions in Kuwait, Singapore and the UAE. In 2019, he was commissioned to photograph the World Cosplay Summit in Japan, traveling with a Saudi team competing at the event for the first time.

“It was amazing, I met people from around 20 countries who came to take part,” he said. “It was a great experience.”

Completely self-taught, Al-Joghiman caught the photography bug at college and has been training himself ever since. “I’ve been dabbling in photography since high school, but I started taking it more seriously in college. I’ve been shooting professionally since 2012 or 2013,” he said.

Al-Joghiman started off humbly, with a camera-centric smartphone, but has since expanded his collection significantly, and now shoots with a variety of high-tech cameras from Sony. Now he is attracting interest from both local and international sponsors, especially in the gaming and cosplay areas.

“Cosplayers are kind of difficult to shoot because they can be perfectionists, but I love seeing the joy on their faces when they see the final pictures. That makes it worthwhile,” he said.

Al-Joghiman is happy that social restrictions on photography in Saudi Arabia are easing, allowing him to find more opportunities to do the work he loves.

“It’s difficult to take pictures of people here, especially strangers, but I can’t really blame them, considering that they are not really used to that in our culture. But things are changing and it’s much easier to be a photographer in Saudi Arabia now,” he said.

HIGHLIGHT

Abdullah Al-Joghiman has been asked to shoot for local events such as Gamers’ Con and internationally at conventions in Kuwait, Singapore and the UAE. In 2019, he was commissioned to photograph the World Cosplay Summit in Japan, traveling with a Saudi team competing at the event for the first time.

He is grateful for the Ministry of Culture’s efforts to revive the Kingdom’s art scene, and has long hoped that photography will become more regulated in the country.

“The market for photography and videography really needs to be regulated. It’s hard enough putting a price on one’s work without scoping out the competition and finding that someone else is charging thousands for just a headshot when I’m doing shoots for two or three hundred,” he said.

“I love my work, and I’d love to be able to do it for free, but at the end of the day I still need to eat,” he said.

Al-Joghiman doesn’t want to limit anyone else’s opportunities but simply wants the playing field evened out a little.

“As a photographer, I just want a fair chance for everyone. More importantly, a client should know exactly what they are paying for,” he said.

His advice to young Saudis looking to become photographers is this: “If you pursue photography, don’t worry. Just do what you love, and if people tell you that they don’t look good in pictures, convince them by taking a picture of them.”

AlJoghiman’s work can be found on Instagram and Twitter (@finalecco), and on his website, https://www.eccofantasyph.com