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Telenor Security threat to Pakistan - Telenor prank calls irk citizens and police.

Official at the CPO said that around 90 percent prank calls and 10 percen genuine calls dialled up to Resue 1122 from Telenor numbers were routed to his office. He also confirmed that at three different offices at the CPO, including the Control Room of IGP, such calls had been received frequently during the last five months

The thrilling and amazing news published in the English national daily last month in which disclosed the Telenor gaffes and errors. Recently, Norwegian telecommunications group Telenor had showed its report a 36 per cent drop in first-quarter profits due to weak performance. The reason may be to increase the profit in Pakistan. Telenor deliberately diverted the genuine calls to the prank calls. It is matter of great concern to the authority to look into matter seriously and will take serious action against the company for the safeguard of the country.

The erroneous routing of calls from a Telenor aimed at Rescue 1122 to the offices of Punjab Police, has not only been irritating the genuine emergency callers but also letting the officials to develop 'acquaintances' with the female prank callers.

"This chapter started some five months back but despite the repeated requests made for its rectification but the officials of the company have not been moved," a senior police official said. Another official at the Central Police Office (CPO) said that around 90 per cent prank calls and 10 per cent genuine calls dialled up for Rescue 1122 from Telenor numbers were routed to his office. He also confirmed that at three different offices at the CPO, including the Control Room of Inspector General of Police (IGP), such calls had been received frequently during the last five months.

This correspondent also observed that on average one call per minute was being received at an official number installed at an office in the CPO. Most of the callers were girls who dialled for gossip with the operators of Rescue 1122 from Telenor numbers, another official confirmed. He said the officials had now saved the cell numbers of female prank callers identified from the CLIs to call them at nights. In a humorous tone, the official said that officials also remembered the specific numbers of girls and as the number appears at the CLI, the relevant official attended the call and asked the girl call on his personal cell number. He said it had become a source of entertainment for police officials at a time when the force was under the target of terrorists.

He also admitted that the practice had been hindering their routine work. "We also receive genuine emergency calls aimed at Rescue 1122 and guide them to call from some other network instead of Telenor," the officials claimed. They said that on June 2, they received two emergency calls one about the drowning of a boy in City Canal near Lalyani and another about a fire incident at the University of Engineering and Technology (UET). To a question, the official said calls dialled up for only Rescue 1122 from Telenor were routed to their offices. He gave the reason that as Telenor network had made the call at Rescue 1122 helpline free of cost as compared to the other service providers, the ratio of prank calls was high at Rescue 1122 and the same were being routed to the CPO. He claimed that not a single call aimed at Rescue 1122 was erroneously routed to their official numbers at CPO so far.

When asked whether they had complained about this problem to the company authorities, they said that they had registered complaints at the thelpline of Telenor but the latter had asked them to ask their official exchange manager for rectification. The officials disclosed their exchange manager had said that the fault was with Telenor. The genuine callers have also registered their protest against the wrong routing of emergency calls from Telenor as it creates a delay in timely rescue of victims in any accident. They questioned those responsible that what a victim would do if he had only Telenor Network SIM at the time of incident and his call was routed to the Punjab Police Headquarters.

They said that even if the officials at the CPO guided the genuine caller, how thelatter, stuck in an emergency, could find some other network connection to inform the rescue service. The citizens have demanded immediate rectification of the fault to avert any big human or property loss. Talking about the issue, Manager CSR and Communications of Telenor Network Affan Haider said when the call was dialled from Telenor network; it was routed by the exchanges of the Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) or the National Telecommunication Corporation (NTC) to the designated numbers. He said it was the responsibility of the PTCL or NTC to route the calls properly. Affan further claimed that the technical fault was not on the part of Telenor; however, he would look into the issue.

It is surprised to know about the comments of Manager CSR, it is duty of service provider not PTCL or NTC. If this happened such as he said than they should resolve the problems amicably. They don't disturb and stake the security of the country. Those playing pranks have kept the police busy by fake emergency calls. It is pertinent to mention, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has issued show-cause notice to Telenor on poor Quality of Services (QoS). The telecom watchdog has said that its findings were accurate on technical aspects, which had also been acknowledged by cellular phone operators in the response of raised issues. It said that it had removed all jammers installed in different areas promptly so there should be good quality of services maintained by operators on their part.

In response of PTA notice, it approached to court for stay order against imposed penalty and LHC has awarded stay order to Telenor for interim period against the show-cause notice issued by PTA because Norwegian Group has spent a lot of money to flourish its businesses and habits. Now the case in court and honourable court will decide the fate of Telenor.

It is remembered that in Russia, a court in Tyumen, Siberia had dismissed a stay motion by Telenor to prevent the sale of its stake in Russia's second largest mobile operator, Vimpelcom. Telenor was officially served with a notice to pay $1.7 billion in damages. Since the launching of Uninor in India, it is facing tough time as the subscribers lamented its service and lodged numerous complaints against the Uninor. To watch the scenario, Managing Director, Erik Vellan, Uninor India, has sent his resignation letter and the board of Uninor has accepted the resignation of Stein- Erik Vellan as Managing Director.

Sigve Brekke, Head of Telenor Asia Region, has been nominated as the Managing director of Uninor pending all regulatory and statutory approvals in India, and will also continue to be the head of Asia for Telenor. It is remembered that Stein-Erik Vellan was the Managing Director of Uninor during the crucial time of initial rollout of the operations in India and will now move on to a different position within the Telenor Group. In this connection, a very useful and informative website developed for consumer complaints. You can visit http://www.consumercomplaints.in/ and tape just uninor, you will find a lot of complaints against Uninor poor services. Movam said: are ye saley uninor wale pata nahi kahan se India a gaye salon ko pata nahi ki ye Pakistan nahi India hai ganduon ka band baja denge.

Shahid Ali said: I bought a Uninor SIM card (No. 89918791072013437123 and mobile No. 7398518691) submitting my DL and Pan Card Xerox as proof. After some days I bocked its pin unfortunately. When I contacted to the customer care to get the puk code I found that the SIM card was not in my name so I did not get the puk code. Sunil Jagannath criticized and requested the people to all those who are interested to test Uninor, I heartily appeal - please don't take it, don't waste your money and time, as I know it will surely fail. I have taken a new SIM card, and had a bitter experience, so thereby I am requesting you to stay away from it. Unlike TATA Docomo, which succeeded to win people's hearts right from the beginning, this Uninor could not achieve like that.

Venumadhav wrote sir, I am facing many problems with Uninor service. When I am sending a text message I am getting response as message sent and the same message cannot be delivered to the destination. And when some of my friends calling me they are getting reply as check the number you have dialed.

Raghuveer said I had put the Uninor SIM (cellular service). In the ads they advertise 29 paise for a call (1min). But they took 68 paise for a call. I asked about this to the Uninor customer care. They said 39 paise for call set up and 29 paise for the call. I asked the customer care representative as why you advertise that one call in 29 pasise and the dealer for Uninor told me the first call will be charged 39 paise and from second call charge will be 29 paise.

It means the people of India more service and quality conscious then us, they don't compromise on quality and service. There is need to campaign to aware the customers who Telenor deceive you and plundering the money from the innocent people. In its continued efforts to streamline data of mobile phone users Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has blocked more than 10.5 million illegal SIMs so far. The action has been taken in the wake of ongoing campaign against sale and use of non- registered SIMs. PTA has announced that it would remain watchful till the issue of unnamed mobile SIMs is resolved completely.

If PTA will give details of 10.5 million illegal blocked SIMs, I assured Telenor will lead in illegal SIMs whose claimed 2nd largest network. PTA have all data of all operators in Pakistan, it is amazing and surprising news for us Telenor claimed it had attracted one million customers through Mobile Number Portability (MNP), since the MNP service started back in March 2007, its funny. Recently, Telenor Pakistan had launched a campaign, motive behind campaign is apparent, it wants you to think and bring the best of your work in order to achieve glorified Pakistan but it seemed the company had started election campaign against all politicians and President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari. Cast your vote and change future of Pakistan. The presentation of commercial totally baseless and irrelevant with the object which what they convey the message to the people. Pakistan has already faced many challenges and Telenor is trying derails the democracy in Pakistan because present government have strict check on such service provider companies.

The large number of people staged a demonstration and demanded the government declare war against Norway and Denmark for reprinting blasphemous caricatures in January 2010.

The countrywide rally started in different places. The protestors chanted slogans to award death to the publishers and cartoonists of Denmark and Norway. Protestors also demanded that Pakistan should intercept all kinds of ties with Norway and Denmark and declare war on both the countries. Many of the protest banners carried writings such as "Anyone who kills Kurt Westergaurd will be hero of Islam" Somali Cartoon attacker is Hero of Islam". "We can sacrifice our lives for the honour of our Prophet". The Foreign Office strongly condemned the reprinting of the blasphemous Danish caricatures of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) in a newspaper in Norway.

Pakistan urged Norway to take appropriate measures and ensure that the people who committed this blasphemous act were warned or punished. Six Norwegian soldiers belonging to the NATO-led ISAF force opened fired on innocent Muslims protesting against cartoons of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and several were killed and many injured. Norway Christians spoke against Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and government provided them protection Norway has published cartoons of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) showing him as terrorist, Its time to resist against this evil boycott Norway's company Telenor and do not use their SIMs, do not easyload , do not buy new SIMs if you love Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and do support Islam. A lot of number of websites and blogs had condemned the irresponsible and aphetic attitude of Norway. Furthermore, Telenor has intended to launch another service to befool.

Telenor is focusing in Asian countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia and India due to low currencies and high profit margins. Telenor had already minted money from the innocent people of the country to launched easypaisa campaign. Now it is planning to offer saving and insurance services to its clients in Pakistan. Telenor had copied ideas of easypaisa from Kenya. Kenya is the first country in the world to use mobile phones for cash transfers. Safaricom Limited developed the service, called M-PESA. The GSMA Foundation Inc will support the project with help of Mobile Money for the Unbanked (MMU) Fund. The reasons to launch easypaisa saving and insurance services to be Telenor worldwide profit slashed and badly flopped in other countries like Russia, Serbia, Bangladesh and India.

The M-PESA service does not require users to have bank accounts. All they need to do is register at an authorised M-PESA agent by providing their Safaricom mobile number and their identification card. Once registered, the user can buy digital funds at any M-PESA agent and send that electronic cash to any other mobile phone user in Kenya by SMS. Recipients can either redeem this for conventional cash at M-PESA agent outlets or buy Safaricom airtime for themselves and other subscribers.

An M- PESA-enabled mobile phone can also function as an electronic wallet. To watch the scenario, Telenor losing its ground in Pakistan, a delegation of Telenor Group called various government ministers and discussed with them the current situation in the country. Headed by Harald Norvik, Chairman Telenor Group, the delegation raised concerns on the taxation system as well as levying Value Added Tax. Senior management of Telenor including Sigve Brekke, Head of Asia, Telenor Group, Jon Eddy Abdullah, CEO Telenor Pakistan and Aamir Ibrahim, Vice President, Strategy and Corporate Affairs Division, Telenor Pakistan were also part of the delegation. Pakistan has a sizable market to cellular provider companies and Telenor wants to capture through backdoors within a very short period of time.

Telenor have considered its company will not survive in future so they jumped into IT business and recently, the boards of directors of EDB Business Partner and ErgoGroup have agreed to recommend to their shareholders a combination of EDB and ErgoGroup to create a leading Nordic IT vendor. Telenor Group holds an ownership share of 51.3 per cent of EDB Business Partner. "We have for a long period of time said that Telenor will support a good and long term industrial solution for EDB Business Partner. This transaction is an excellent opportunity to create a major player in this market. From our point of view, this merger will be beneficial to EDB and its shareholders," said Jon Fredrik Baksaas, President and CEO of Telenor Group.

Telenor in conjunction with Tameer Microfinance Bank, in which Telenor has majority shareholder, introduced easypaisa, a service to ease the hassle of utility bill payments. easypaisa was not about managing bank account through phone, it was not make micro payments to friends/relatives even grocery store through phone, it was simply a bill payment but where mobile phone use is optional.

Telenor with it's vast outreach through its franchises and retailers is providing Tameer Bank an outlet to collect on bill payment be it gas, electric or other utilities bills that's it, Telenor, as a friend puts it, has taken the line from outside the bank to outside the grocery store and their franchisee, where bill through cash and get bill payment receipt and optionally get the confirmation by SMS on cellphone no matter service provider.

The people pay it through credit cards, ATM, Nadra kiosk, post offices and even through banks where sometimes stand in a short line inside the air conditioned premises. The company must focus on customers' problems and remittances timely. The question on security would be more on internal threats, which cannot really be overlooked in financial transactions. USSD cannot be encrypted, and hence be intercepted by someone having access to the USSD gateway. Probability very little...implications: really bad, not just for the operator, but for the complete industry as consumers may lose faith.

In India, so-called Norwegian giant has launched its service in India as Uninor, newest telecom player, is being forced to go slow on its nationwide expansion plans due to governmental delays in allocations and clearances. The Indian government thinks that the company can create security hazards in the country. Although the firm, which is a joint venture between Telenor and domestic real estate major Unitech, has received spectrums to operate in 21 circles, it has only been able to operationalise services in 13 of these, so far. "We still do not have spectrum in Delhi and in crucial districts of four other circles," Uninor executive vice-president (corporate affairs), Rajiv Bawa said, explaining that the firm was yet to start operations in Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir, Assam and the North East in spite of holding the licences.

"We would have liked to launch in other circles sooner, too, but the dynamics have changed since the new regulations were brought into place last year. The ambiguity of the government policy and the lack of clarity have had an impact," Bawa said. The current regime of seeking security clearances for telecom equipment was also having an effect, he added.

Uninor, which had said that it intends on capturing eight per cent of the domestic telecom market by 2018, is unlikely to benefit significantly from the much-delayed roll out of mobile number portability (MNP), Bawa said. "Perception says that MNP will hurt the incumbent, but over the long-term, it will create a level-playing field. It will not be a game- changer for us," he explained.

"It is not that these new operators had not factored in the negatives. They were aware of the many hurdles even when they were jostling for licence," said Paul Budder, telecommunication analyst at Berg Insights, a research analysis firm. "Though several policy decisions continue to cause grief to the new telcos, most of them have entered the arena with deep pockets," he added.

For example, Uninor has planned a capex outlay of Rs 12,000 crore over three years for pan-India operations, and Videocon's Datacom

Solutions plans to spend Rs 14,000 crore over three years for the same purpose. Uninor has factored in an EBITDA breakeven of approximately three years after launch and an operating cash flow breakeven of approximately five years after launch. Norwegian telecom operator Telenor ASA raised its margin guidance for 2010. The decision has been taken despite posting a larger-than-expected fall in first quarter net profit. The full-year guidance for the EBITDA has been raised from 27 per cent to 28 per cent. Guidance for capital expenditure has been cut from 16 per cent to 13 per cent and 14 per cent excluding licenses and spectrum. According to Chief Executive Jon Fredrik Baksaas, Telenor raised margin guidance due to a strong performance in its Asian and Nordic markets, and reduced its Capex guidance due to lower overall investments in the first quarter and at the same time the company has maintained its previous 2010 outlook for low single digit revenue growth.

A net profit of 1.04 billion Norwegian kroner ($172 million) has been reported by Telenor in the first quarter down from NOK1.62 billion a year earlier and below analyst's expectations of NOK1.29 billion.

They had registered complaints at the helpline of Telenor but the latter had asked them to ask their official exchange manager for rectification, while exchange manager had said that the fault was with Telenor

Most of the callers were girls who dialled for gossip with the operators of Rescue 1122 from Telenor numbers, another official confirmed. Now saved the cell numbers of female prank callers identified from the CLIs to call them at nights

PTA has issue show-cause notice to Telenor on poor Quality of Services (QoS). The telecom watchdog has said that its findings were accurate on technical aspects
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Date:Aug 15, 2010
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