The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has issued a regulatory framework for Short Range Devices (SRD) and internet of things (IoT) services.
In a statement on Wednesday, the authority detailed that the framework was created and introduced as a regulatory tool to facilitate service operations of internet of things. “PTA shall start accepting class Low-Power Wide-Area Network (LPWAN) licensing applications from March 31, 2022,” it said.
The framework provides a regulatory mechanism for the industry, to enable the development of IoT ecosystem in Pakistan, PTA said.
It aims to accelerate the growth of IoT services to facilitate digital transformation, creating IoT-enabled systems in different sectors to automate operations and render electronic services to the citizens.
IoT is one of the major component of the fourth industrial revolution (Industry 4.0) and it is used in running smart city systems and digital services such as smart homes, smart meters, and transportation thereby supporting government’s vision of Digital Pakistan, it said. In comments to The Express Tribune, SI Global CEO Noman Ahmed Said lauded PTA for introducing regulatory measures for IoT and said that they were vital for monitoring as well as checking how vast and widespread accessibility to internet and information has now become.
According to him, IoT essentially translated to large scale data exchange which was an incredibly sensitive matter therefore, regulations were needed to curb the rising cybercrime rates in the country.
While individuals can take several steps to protect their data, the regulations will provide an added layer of protection in preserving their privacy, he said.
“The IoT ecosystem has recently started developing in Pakistan therefore this measure will also promote its use and growth,” he said. “Moreover, its access to masses will encourage its extensive use at an accelerated pace.” Besides, this will eventually lead to automation and digitalisation of various sectors across Pakistan and amalgamate different segments.”
IoT would also make it easier to cross exchange relevant information between various branches of the government and private sector departments.
Holistically, it would combine information for a wide variety of areas and ultimately lead to faster and less cumbersome responses, Said added. “It will also promote ease of access for citizens,” he said.
Alpha Beta Core CEO Khurram Schehzad termed the regulations excellent initiative from the government and held the opinion that the country should have introduced the rules long time back.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 17th, 2022.
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