Social distancing gives rise to Self-RICA


TOBi, the mobile operator’s chatbot

JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – IN the wake of social distancing, South African mobile subscribers can now self-register with the Regulation of Interception and Provision of Communication-related Information Act (RICA) through a chatbot.

This eliminates the need for customers to visit a Vodacom store where the process is traditionally done.

TOBi, the mobile operator’s chatbot and self-service team member offers the service.

The chatbot can be accessed via the MyVodacom App and allows existing customers to Self-RICA prepaid subscriber identity module (SIM) cards from the comfort of their homes.

“We have simplified the process and further digitised the journey for our customers,” said Jorge Mendes, Vodacom Chief Officer Consumer Business Unit.

“This is yet another way we are driving a digital transformation journey for ourselves and for our customers,” the executive added.

He said introducing Self-RICA on self-service platforms was a way of encouraging customers to perform certain functions from home in support of governments’ call to stay safe and stay at home.

“From this lockdown period onwards, customers are able to RICA their SIMs from the comfort of their homes.”

During the Self-RICA process, TOBi assists with capturing and validating personal information against external trusted sources including the Department of Home Affairs, biometrics and Artificial Intelligence (AI).

According to Vodacom, TOBi solves between 10 000 to 20 000 customer queries a day via SMS, WhatsApp, the My Vodacom app and on the Vodacom website.

RICA came into effect in 2011.

– CAJ News

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