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Old 2009 Reuters Item

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Post by OldWEB Tue Feb 20, 2024 10:57 pm

For the longtime residents, I found this article and am interested in whatever became of this?


Mexico to fingerprint phone users in crime fight

Mon Feb 9, 2009 4:08pm EST

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexico will start a national register of mobile phone users that will include fingerprinting all customers in an effort to catch criminals who use the devices to extort money and negotiate kidnapping ransoms.

Under a new law published on Monday and due to be in force in April, mobile phone companies will have a year to build up a database of their clients, complete with fingerprints. The idea would be to match calls and messages to the phones' owners.

Hundreds of people are kidnapped in Mexico every year and the number of victims is rising sharply as drug gangs, under pressure from an army crackdown, seek new income.

Lawmakers who pushed the bill through Congress last year say there are around 700 criminal bands in Mexico, some of them operating from prison cells, that use cell phones to extract extortion and kidnap ransom payments.

Most of Mexico's 80 million mobile phones are prepaid handsets with a given number of minutes of use that can be bought in stores without any identification. The phones can be topped up with more minutes via vendors on street corners.

The register, detailed in the government's official gazette, means new subscribers will now be fingerprinted when they buy a handset or phone contract.

The plan also requires operators to store all cell phone information such as call logs, text and voice messages, for one year. Information on users and calls will remain private and only available with court approval to track down criminals.

It was not clear whether the government would provide any funding to aid in the logistics of the register.

Billionaire Carlos Slim, who controls Mexico's No. 1 cell phone operator America Movil, said the law would be more useful if it tracked the movements of cell phone users. "What needs to be done is another type of more effective measures," Slim told reporters.

Former Finance Minister Francisco Gil Diaz, head of the local unit of Spain's Telefonica, has criticized the law, saying it will only create more bureaucracy for operators. Telefonica is Mexico's No. 2 mobile operator behind America Movil.

Lawmakers say phone users must immediately report lost or loaned phones to avoid being held responsible for a handset used in a crime.

(Reporting by Tomas Sarmiento; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)
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Post by ferret Wed Feb 21, 2024 7:28 am

Impossible to implement because it is so easy to swap out the sim cards on the majority of the world's mobile phones.
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Post by OldWEB Fri Feb 23, 2024 10:38 pm

ferret wrote:Impossible to implement because it is so easy to swap out the sim cards on the majority of the world's mobile phones.
I agree it would be next to impossible to implement, very expensive.
But it would be the SIM card that contains the cellphone number, so the fingerprint would be tied to it. You cannot make a call w/o a SIM card that in turn needs to have a number to it.
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Post by ferret Fri Feb 23, 2024 10:48 pm

Ever heard of "burner phones"? https://www.techtarget.com/whatis/definition/burner-phone
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Post by OldWEB Mon Mar 11, 2024 4:03 pm

ferret wrote:Ever heard of "burner phones"? https://www.techtarget.com/whatis/definition/burner-phone
Yes I have, been there, done that. Please explain how you think they work, it would save ME doing the sleuthing for your benefit.
They still are not totally secure, require a SIM for a separate phone or the apps will use your present data package or the internet if needed (VoiP) and that is still traceable.
If, as my article refers to kidnappings, they kidnap someone, just use that persons phone to make the calls. It is getting to be anyone over 12 YO has a cellphone these days.
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Post by OldWEB Mon Mar 11, 2024 4:32 pm

Got me thinking (Random musing...) and I would like to add these "Anonymous Guy Fawkes" people are truly amazing in what they do.
They can/have hacked into anything, find out any information and steal old peoples money online. They have been offered immunity and jobs to the likes of the CIA/FBI, anti-virus companies, other countries... If you like computer geek stories, find them online, VERY interesting what they can do/have done.
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Post by ferret Mon Mar 11, 2024 6:22 pm

OldWEB wrote:
ferret wrote:Ever heard of "burner phones"? https://www.techtarget.com/whatis/definition/burner-phone
Yes I have, been there, done that.  Please explain how you think they work, it would save ME doing the sleuthing for your benefit.
They still are not totally secure, require a SIM for a separate phone or the apps will use your present data package or the internet if needed (VoiP) and that is still traceable.
If, as my article refers to kidnappings, they kidnap someone, just use that persons phone to make the calls. It is getting to be anyone over 12 YO has a cellphone these days.

When I wanted to check out if AT&T worked at my home in Riberas, I bought a 150 peso card with a SIM from AT&T (the office was in the Laguna Mall at the time). I did not have to provide any ID or sign any contract. Just the 150 pesos. I swapped out the SIM on my phone and used it in the mall to make calls (it did not work in my home). Why in the world would you put identifiable apps on it when you have to sign into those apps to use them?
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Post by mudgirl Mon Mar 11, 2024 6:54 pm

OldWEB wrote:
If, as my article refers to kidnappings, they kidnap someone, just use that persons phone to make the calls.

Criminals are obviously smarter than you. A kidnapper wouldn't use the victim's phone because it could be easily traced to its location.
Nor would they, as ferret pointed out, put traceable apps on their burner phone.

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Old 2009 Reuters Item Empty WOW, the merlot musta gone down goooood this afternoon....

Post by OldWEB Mon Mar 11, 2024 8:38 pm

ferret wrote:
When I wanted to check out if AT&T worked at my home in Riberas, I bought a 150 peso card with a SIM from AT&T (the office was in the Laguna Mall at the time). I did not have to provide any ID or sign any contract. Just the 150 pesos. I swapped out the SIM on my phone and used it in the mall to make calls (it did not work in my home). Why in the world would you put identifiable apps on it when you have to sign into those apps to use them?

mudgirl wrote:
Criminals are obviously smarter than you. A kidnapper wouldn't use the victim's phone because it could be easily traced to its location.
Nor would they, as ferret pointed out, put traceable apps on their burner phone.

In the morning, with a clearer head, the two of you can re-read this thread and see how you just bring it full circle... all in the name of attack!

And to lull you to sleep.... a pretty kitty song.
https://www.youtube.com/shorts/qTUEX-K08dw

Nighty night.
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Post by mudgirl Mon Mar 11, 2024 8:49 pm

"When I wanted to check out if AT&T worked at my home in Riberas, I bought a 150 peso card with a SIM from AT&T (the office was in the Laguna Mall at the time). I did not have to provide any ID or sign any contract."

As I recall, I have bought 5 or 6 phones, and several SIM cards (or they came with the phone) over the 20 some years I've been in Mexico.

I have never had to provide any ID or sign anything for any of them.

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Post by OldWEB Mon Mar 11, 2024 9:04 pm

I too bought SIM cards in the near past, no questions, that is why I wondered what became of it. I realize it is of 2009 vintage story, but I was not in MX for any length of time to know (or care) back then.
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Post by mudgirl Mon Mar 11, 2024 10:59 pm

Old Web- FYI I wasn't "attacking" you with the "criminals are smarter"- it was tongue-in-cheek. There's no shame in not having the mind of a criminal.

And also, I'm not a cat person and think the plethora of cat and dog jokes on TOB are stupid kindergarten level fare.

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Post by RickS Wed Mar 13, 2024 2:57 pm

mudgirl wrote: And also, I'm not a cat person and think the plethora of cat and dog jokes on TOB are stupid kindergarten level fare.

"Kindergarten Level Fare"   Wow! Just Wow!  So if one does not like dog and cat jokes that means that those who do must be kindergarten level?
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Post by mudgirl Wed Mar 13, 2024 3:04 pm

No, I didn't say that- I was referring to the "jokes", not the people who enjoy them.

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