FCC Committee Approves Recommendation on Call Authentication Education

Recommendation includes important provision to resolve issues with mislabeled calls from legitimate businesses.

12/11/2019 1:00 PM

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FCC Committee Approves Recommendation on Call Authentication Education

The Federal Communications Commission’s Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC) unanimously approved a recommendation to educate consumers about the SHAKEN/STIR call authentication framework Dec. 11. The recommendation was forwarded to the full commission.

Under the SHAKEN/STIR framework—a set of protocols and a multiphase framework developed with the input of many stakeholders—calls traveling through interconnected phone networks would have their caller ID “signed” as legitimate by originating carriers and validated by other carriers before reaching consumers, according to the FCC. The framework digitally validates the handoff of phone calls passing through the complex web of networks, allowing the phone company of the consumer receiving the call to verify that a call is from the person making it.

“This is part of a broader strategy to combat robocalls,” said Michael Santorelli, co-chair of the FCC’s Caller ID Authentication Working Group, during the CAC meeting Dec. 11.

“We’re pleased the recommendation includes provisions that would require voice service providers to work with consumers and callers to resolve issues on call labeling, including potential mislabeling,” said ACA International’s Federal Advocacy Manager Patrick Russell, who attended the meeting.

ACA continues to advocate for a balance between protecting consumers and allowing legitimate businesses to communicate vital information as the FCC and Congress work to mitigate illegal robocalls.

The Call Authentication Working Group’s recommendation would:

  • Frame the problem, unwanted robocalls, facilitated by caller ID manipulation (spoofing).
  • Tee up promise of SHAKEN/STIR to help combat industry-led standard to enhance call authentication.
  • Note initial limitations of SHAKEN/STIR, including that it will only work on IP-based communications initially and that it is most effective when paired with analytics.
  • Highlight the need for robust consumer education about SHAKEN/STIR and related tools.

The commission is also mandating adoption of SHAKEN/STIR if major voice service providers do not do so voluntarily by the end of the year, and to create a mechanism to provide information to consumers about the effectiveness of providers’ “robocall solutions,” ACA previously reported. ACA filed comments on the SHAKEN/STIR framework with the FCC in July 2019.

“I am determined we continue to press this issue domestically to finally help attack this problem,” said FCC Chairman Pai during the CAC meeting. “I expect major voice providers to implement this framework by the end of this year and if they [fail] to do so, we will be taking action in the new year to make sure they do.”

Entities should also evaluate how consumers respond to call labeling, including whether they are effective at communicating authenticated call information and prompting consumer action that mitigates harms from unwanted robocalls, according to the recommendation.

The working group also recommends:

  • The FCC, industry, consumer groups and other stakeholders conduct studies and solicit input on what factors voice service providers should consider for displaying caller ID information to consumers, including SHAKEN/STIR verification, caller identity information, telephone number authentication and other information about the call.
  • The FCC develop webpages and educational campaigns that use simple language, visuals and videos to provide consumers explanations of and resources on SHAKEN/STIR and the call authentication capabilities and limitations of various voice service networks and links to providers’ websites.
  • Providers maintain customer service and other resources to help consumers and call originators answer questions to resolve issues, related to reports of call labeling, including potential mislabeling.
  • The FCC keep evaluating how best to encourage providers to continue innovating and improving caller ID services that empower consumers with the relevant call information, which may include additional information along with the combined results of SHAKEN/STIR and reasonable analytics.
  • The FCC should continue to collaborate with industry, consumer advocacy groups, federal, state and local government agencies and other stakeholders to educate consumers about how caller ID services, consumer display practices and other measures can respond to evolving illegal and unwanted robocaller tactics, protect consumers and restore trust in voice services.

The recommendation from the working group is relative to certain aspects of the FCC’s Declaratory Ruling and Third Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in Advanced Methods to Target and Eliminate Unlawful Robocalls.

In the third notice of proposed rulemaking, the FCC seeks to encourage implementation of a framework for authenticating calls (SHAKEN/STIR framework) by proposing a safe harbor from liability under the call completion rules for voice service providers that choose to block calls, or a subset of calls, that are not authenticated under that framework.


Follow ACA International on Twitter @ACAIntl and @acacollector, Facebook and request to join our LinkedIn group for news and event updates. ACA International members are welcome to submit news items for possible publication to comm@acainternational.org. Visit our publications page for news submission guidelines and subscriptions to ACA Daily, Collector magazine and Pulse.

Advertising is available for companies wishing to promote their products or services. Be sure to visit the ACA Events Calendar on the Education and Training page to view our listing of upcoming CORE Curriculum and Hot Topic seminars featuring critical educational opportunities for your company.


Subscribe to ACA Daily NEWSROOM

FCC Committee Approves Recommendation on Call Authentication Education

The Federal Communications Commission’s Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC) unanimously approved a recommendation to educate consumers about the SHAKEN/STIR call authentication framework Dec. 11. The recommendation was forwarded to the full commission.

Under the SHAKEN/STIR framework—a set of protocols and a multiphase framework developed with the input of many stakeholders—calls traveling through interconnected phone networks would have their caller ID “signed” as legitimate by originating carriers and validated by other carriers before reaching consumers, according to the FCC. The framework digitally validates the handoff of phone calls passing through the complex web of networks, allowing the phone company of the consumer receiving the call to verify that a call is from the person making it.

“This is part of a broader strategy to combat robocalls,” said Michael Santorelli, co-chair of the FCC’s Caller ID Authentication Working Group, during the CAC meeting Dec. 11.

“We’re pleased the recommendation includes provisions that would require voice service providers to work with consumers and callers to resolve issues on call labeling, including potential mislabeling,” said ACA International’s Federal Advocacy Manager Patrick Russell, who attended the meeting.

ACA continues to advocate for a balance between protecting consumers and allowing legitimate businesses to communicate vital information as the FCC and Congress work to mitigate illegal robocalls.

The Call Authentication Working Group’s recommendation would:

  • Frame the problem, unwanted robocalls, facilitated by caller ID manipulation (spoofing).
  • Tee up promise of SHAKEN/STIR to help combat industry-led standard to enhance call authentication.
  • Note initial limitations of SHAKEN/STIR, including that it will only work on IP-based communications initially and that it is most effective when paired with analytics.
  • Highlight the need for robust consumer education about SHAKEN/STIR and related tools.

The commission is also mandating adoption of SHAKEN/STIR if major voice service providers do not do so voluntarily by the end of the year, and to create a mechanism to provide information to consumers about the effectiveness of providers’ “robocall solutions,” ACA previously reported. ACA filed comments on the SHAKEN/STIR framework with the FCC in July 2019.

“I am determined we continue to press this issue domestically to finally help attack this problem,” said FCC Chairman Pai during the CAC meeting. “I expect major voice providers to implement this framework by the end of this year and if they [fail] to do so, we will be taking action in the new year to make sure they do.”

Entities should also evaluate how consumers respond to call labeling, including whether they are effective at communicating authenticated call information and prompting consumer action that mitigates harms from unwanted robocalls, according to the recommendation.

The working group also recommends:

  • The FCC, industry, consumer groups and other stakeholders conduct studies and solicit input on what factors voice service providers should consider for displaying caller ID information to consumers, including SHAKEN/STIR verification, caller identity information, telephone number authentication and other information about the call.
  • The FCC develop webpages and educational campaigns that use simple language, visuals and videos to provide consumers explanations of and resources on SHAKEN/STIR and the call authentication capabilities and limitations of various voice service networks and links to providers’ websites.
  • Providers maintain customer service and other resources to help consumers and call originators answer questions to resolve issues, related to reports of call labeling, including potential mislabeling.
  • The FCC keep evaluating how best to encourage providers to continue innovating and improving caller ID services that empower consumers with the relevant call information, which may include additional information along with the combined results of SHAKEN/STIR and reasonable analytics.
  • The FCC should continue to collaborate with industry, consumer advocacy groups, federal, state and local government agencies and other stakeholders to educate consumers about how caller ID services, consumer display practices and other measures can respond to evolving illegal and unwanted robocaller tactics, protect consumers and restore trust in voice services.

The recommendation from the working group is relative to certain aspects of the FCC’s Declaratory Ruling and Third Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in Advanced Methods to Target and Eliminate Unlawful Robocalls.

In the third notice of proposed rulemaking, the FCC seeks to encourage implementation of a framework for authenticating calls (SHAKEN/STIR framework) by proposing a safe harbor from liability under the call completion rules for voice service providers that choose to block calls, or a subset of calls, that are not authenticated under that framework.


Follow ACA International on Twitter @ACAIntl and @acacollector, Facebook and request to join our LinkedIn group for news and event updates. ACA International members are welcome to submit news items for possible publication to comm@acainternational.org. Visit our publications page for news submission guidelines and subscriptions to ACA Daily, Collector magazine and Pulse.

Advertising is available for companies wishing to promote their products or services. Be sure to visit the ACA Events Calendar on the Education and Training page to view our listing of upcoming CORE Curriculum and Hot Topic seminars featuring critical educational opportunities for your company.


Subscribe to ACA Daily NEWSROOM

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