Ghana warns against illegal Starlink services

Starlink is not yet commercially available for new customers in Ghana or the majority of countries in Africa. Credit: Starlink

By Jason Rainbow,
Published by Space News, 8 December 2023

TAMPA, Fla. — Ghana is the latest country in Africa to warn against using Starlink before it issues licenses for SpaceX’s satellite broadband service.

The National Communications Authority (NCA), Ghana’s telecoms regulator, cautioned the general public Dec. 7 against using services purported to be from Starlink following reports of equipment being sold and operated in the country.

“We wish to inform the general public that, the NCA has neither licensed the operations of Starlink in Ghana nor type-approved any of their equipment,” the NCA said in a news release.

While SpaceX only expects to launch Starlink commercially in Ghana in the third quarter of 2024, the company’s sprawling low Earth orbit network already covers the country and others that have yet to permit the services.

Regulators in South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Senegal have recently issued similar warnings to the public and Starlink resellers operating without permission.

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa said Nov. 28 that Starlink products were being distributed in South Africa without a license from within the country and from neighboring countries. 

Those providing Starlink services in South Africa without permission could face a fine of around $264,000 or 10% of their annual turnover for every day the offense continued, whichever is greater, the regulator warned.

Starlink is cleared to operate elsewhere in Africa, including Nigeria and Mozambique, the first countries on the continent to approve the network last year.

See: Original Article