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CRIMINALS in Papua New Guinea have taken advantage of counterfeit information and communications technologies (ICT), hence the increase in robberies.

PNG Customs Service and National Information & Communications Technology Authority (NICTA) have revealed that the issue of counterfeit on ICT goods was a major concern. Police said last week that criminals were using counterfeit mobile radios and were access police frequencies with ease which was a threat to national security.

The items which are found to be counterfeits are cell phones, cordless phones, fax machines, GSM telephones, mobile radios, modems, wireless remote devices, PABXs (including small business systems and key systems), pagers, radio receivers, radio transmitters, satellite earth stations, telecommunications switching equipment, telephone instruments, telex equipment, and other equipment emitting a radio signal and any customer premises equipment to be attached to any part of a licensed telecommunications network.

ICT is an umbrella term that includes any communication device or application, encompassing radio, television, cellular phones, computer and network hardware and software, satellite systems and so on, as well as the various services and applications.

Ray Paul, the chief Commissioner of Customs, said that the issue was serious, reiterating his idea of amalgamation of important agencies under one umbrella to effectively address counterfeiting.

NICTA and Customs want to develop and strengthen co-operation and collaboration to regulate the imports of ICT apparatus.

"Pursuant to the "Customs Act" PNG Customs is responsible for enforcement of all prohibited imports and exports which also includes ICT apparatus (equipment). Pursuant to the "NICT Act 2009" NICTA is responsible for type approval of all ICT devices that enter the country," they released.

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