The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has issued guidelines for the easy movement of telecommunications and internet infrastructure personnel amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The movement of front-line personnel in the fight against COVID-19 is currently being managed under the government’s RapidPass System, which uses QR codes and control numbers as checkpoint passes.

“Internet and mobile services have become indispensable in our daily lives during this community quarantine,” Gregorio Honasan II, secretary of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), said in a statement.

“With RapidPass, we hope to fast-track movement and access of telco and ISP (internet service provider) personnel so that they may continue to do their duties, especially in ensuring unhampered services to the Filipino people,” he added.

The NTC, which is under the DICT, said the RapidPass guidelines cover public telecommunication entities, ISPs, value-added service providers, cable TV networks and other Pay TV services and their third-party contractors.

It said entities should apply for their essential and skeleton workforce through bulk application.

Individual applications filed directly to the RapidPass website by individuals belonging to the covered entities will be denied.

The companies are also required to accomplish a spreadsheet, RapidPass form, and an attestation Form (downloadable from https://dict.gov.ph/RapidPass) and should email this to the NTC at [email protected]

Moreover, the NTC’s Regulation Branch or Broadcast Services Division will verify the applications. This will ensure that the personnel listed are appropriately considered as allowed persons outside of residence and determine the appropriate number of RapidPasses to be issued.

Once approved, the RapidPass forms shall be uploaded to the RapidPass System for processing and RapidPass QR code generation. As of now, the RapidPass System is only operational in the National Capital Region, the NTC said. INQ

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