Stopping Robocalls Using Analytics and How STIR/SHAKEN Gets Into the Mix

Jim Machi Photo
Senior Vice President of Product Management and Marketing, Sangoma

Martini glass with olive sticking out of itSeemingly every day, we get a robocall. In 2019 in the US, it was close to 60 Billion of them! So it’s no exaggeration if people say they get called every day. It’s a problem for sure that the government is trying to resolve.

Many people don’t even answer their phone anymore unless they know the DID or seems reasonable (like from a local number). But even that is not entirely safe anymore. And that’s what STIR/SHAKEN is trying to fix. STIR/SHAKEN are protocols and standards that help implement robust caller ID authentication.

STIR stands for Secure Telephone Identity Revisited, and SHAKEN stands for Signature-based Handling of Asserted information using toKENs. (I bet they worked hard to get the SHAKEN acronym going.) According to the FCC, “This means that 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. STIR/SHAKEN 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, in fact, from the number displayed on Caller ID.”

This means any kind of VoIP carrier would need to implement STIR/SHAKEN so as the call goes through the network, and the handoff validates the caller ID is proper and has not been altered as it’s traversed the network. Implementation of these standards needs to be done by June 2021, according to the Traced Act.

So if you implement a VoIP Network and use Wholesale SIP Trunking as an example, you’ll need to make sure your provider has implemented STIR/SHAKEN by June 2021. Since Sangoma is a Wholesale SIP Trunking provider, we’ll have implemented those standards by June 2021.

But there are steps you can take now to help protect your customers. We also have a service that is available now that helps address Caller ID spoofing. It is available both with our Wholesale SIP Trunking and can be used by other carriers, available via an API. It combines analytics, caller authentication, and verification to help address Caller ID spoofing now. Maybe you have noticed “suspected suspicious call” pop up on the phone when you get a call. Our service enables this for your network if you are a Sangoma (VoIP Innovations) customer, or like I said, even if you are not but want to use this service on your network. If you want to learn more about this, please go here.

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