The Department of Telecommunication has used ASTR, an artificial intelligence and face recognition-powered technology for telecom SIM subscriber verification, to identify 40.87 lakh suspect mobile connections and ban 36.61 lakh connections so far.
The majority of SIMs that were disconnected, 12,34,111, were in West Bengal, followed by Haryana (5,24,287), Bihar, including Jharkhand (3,27,246), Madhya Pradesh (2,28,072), and Uttar Pradesh-East (2,04,658).
Other states including Gujarat, Assam, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, and Andhra Pradesh have adopted similar measures. However, Himachal Pradesh, where there are just 3,491 occurrences of disconnected SIM connections, has the lowest number of cases reported.
According to the police, fraudsters use fabricated or fraudulent papers to establish cell connections and commit cybercrimes. In order to detect SIMs issued using such papers, DoT created the AI-powered tool ASTR, which also integrates data analytics methods.
More than 87 crore mobile connections were analyzed by the authorities during the first round of paper-based KYC. For this huge data processing, the Param-Sidhi Supercomputer was used.
There were multiple instances throughout the research when fraudsters obtained hundreds of connections with only one photograph. In addition to the suspicious connections that were found and stopped, 40,123 Points of Sales (PoS), which are locations where customers pay for services, have been blacklisted by service providers and more than 150 FIRs have been lodged throughout India.
East Uttar Pradesh (13,067) had the most PoSs that were blacklisted, followed by West Bengal (10,915), Kolkata (3,937), Haryana (3,024), Bihar, including Jharkhand (2,904), and Odisha (2,417).
During the Sanchar Sathi launch on Tuesday, Ashwini Vaisnaw, the Union Minister for Railways, Communications, and Electronics and IT, stated: “In one example, a person established 5,300 connections using the same picture with multiple identities, while in another, a person made 6,800 connections in a similar manner. These are a few severe instances of these occurrences.