Smaller Carriers Not Prepared as Stir/Shaken Deadline Looms

By Greg Tavarez, TMCnet Editor  |  June 29, 2022

Larger carriers that have implemented STIR/SHAKEN are seeing positive results – as are their customers. However, smaller carriers are having the most trouble containing robocalls. Unfortunately, a high percentage of “bad” robocalls originate on those smaller networks.

“A lot of middle America is run by smaller service providers. They all are part of NTCA,” said Alan Percy, chief marketing officer, TelcoBridges (News - Alert). “They have not done nothing to implement STIR/SHAKEN with a deadline looming. The big guys, like Verizon, have made good progress. But, there are a significant number of operators who are still trying to implement STIR/SHAKEN.”

Percy spoke in a panel discussion moderated by Phil Edholm (News - Alert), president, PKE Consulting LLC & UC, at ITEXPO 2022.

The STIR/SHAKEN framework is an industry-standard caller ID authentication technology that is a set of technical standards and protocols allowing for the authentication and verification of caller ID information for calls carried over IP networks.

“STIR/SHAKEN is like a notary,” said Jim Tyrell, senior director of product marketing, Transaction Network Services (News - Alert). “They do not actually look at the documents you signed.”

The largest carriers are able to block traffic from carriers that haven't done their share to mitigate illegal robocalls originating on their networks, as of Sept. 28, 2021. Small carriers have until June 30 to implement STIR/SHAKEN. That deadline was previously set to June 2023, but the FCC (News - Alert) made the announcement to shorten the deadline in December 2021.

“The FCC does not want to put people out of business, they just want to stop the crime,” said Percy.

Even though STIR/SHAKEN and call-filtering apps have led to a small percentage of high-risk robocalls originating from Tier 1 networks, consumers will not notice an immediate change in terms of robocalls they receive following this first STIR/SHAKEN deadline.

As the session at ITEXPO (News - Alert) 2022 notes, while progress has been made, there is still much work to be done to significantly reduce the number of robocalls people receive each day.

Edited by Erik Linask