TRAI orders banks and companies to check message headers to stop annoying spams
Last update: May 25, 2023, 6:19pm IST
TRAI wants to solve the spam problem once and for all
TRAI said on Thursday that all major entities such as banks, financial institutions and others must complete the message header verification process.
New Delhi: TRAI said on Thursday that all major entities such as banks, financial institutions and others must complete the verification process for message headers and content templates immediately as the telecom regulator went ahead with its campaign to crack down on nuisance messages to safeguard consumers. Any delay by Principal Entities (PEs) to re-verify headers and content templates may result in their headers, content templates and messages being blocked, the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has warned.
TRAI said it will review progress in the next two weeks and can issue appropriate instructions, if necessary. “Therefore, all PEs must complete the content template and header verification process immediately,” TRAI said in a statement.
Entities such as banks, other financial institutions, insurance companies, trading companies, commercial entities, etc. they send commercial messages to telecom subscribers via SMS, and these entities are called Principal Entities (PEs) in the TRAI regulations. In accordance with the regulatory framework, any commercial communication may only be made through registered Headers assigned to EPs for this purpose. Header refers to an alphanumeric string assigned to EPs according to the regulations for sending commercial communications.
These commercial entities are required to obtain content templates registered with the access providers (telcos). Any commercial communication via SMS is subject to verification of the content template registered by the PEs with the access provider and, if it fails, those SMS are not allowed to be delivered to consumers. TRAI has observed that some EPs have registered a large number of headers and content templates and some of these are sometimes misused by some telemarketers.
To stop the same, TRAI on February 16, 2023 ordered the reverification of all headers and content templates registered on the DLT (Distributed Ledger Technology) platform and blocked all unverified message headers and templates within 30 and 60 days respectively. In February 2023, TRAI wrote to RBI, SEBI, NHA and all central/state government departments requesting them to sensitize various institutions and departments under their purview that send bulk SMS on the steps that need to be taken for their part to ensure that the header and message templates are not misused.
“It has been seen that many PEs have not yet completed verification of headers and content templates. Due to lack of timely action by PEs, headers and content templates assigned to such PEs remain vulnerable to potential misuses and can lead to inconvenience for the public in the form of spam and also financial fraud,” TRAI said.
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency – PTI)