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Nov 30, 2017

Neustar Announces Support for Federal Communications Commission Order to Stop Unlawful Robocalls

Blocking illegal robocalls is a top priority to protect consumers from caller fraud

Neustar, Inc., a trusted, neutral provider of real-time information services, announced its support for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Report and Order (R&O) to reduce illegal robocalls. Neustar has been actively engaged with the FCC to recommend solutions to stop phone calls where the caller ID appears to be spoofed or hidden, while ensuring safeguards are in place to avoid blocking legitimate calls.

With an astounding 93.7 million robocalls received every day during August 2017 (U.S.) and an estimated $350 million lost by consumers to scams every year, the FCC has produced a multi-faceted approach to stop unwanted robocalls and protect consumers from caller fraud. The newly adopted R&O serves as an important next step by permitting, for the first time, service providers to block calls that can only be fraudulent. Specifically, the FCC R&O permits service providers to block calls that appear to be from telephone numbers that are invalid, unallocated to any provider, or unassigned to any customer. It also allows blocking of calls from phone numbers that subscribers certify do not make outbound calls, referred to as Do-Not-Originate (DNO) numbers. Neustar agrees with the FCC that providers should only block calls that are definitively identified as fraudulent because they appear to be from invalid, unallocated, unassigned or DNO numbers. 

“We fully support the FCC in its fight against robocalling and call fraud. While the FCC focused on blocking illegal calls, its recent order also noted the availability of commercial caller ID solutions to combat robocalling, including Neustar’s,” said James Garvert, VP and GM, Caller Identification Solutions, Neustar. “By integrating Neustar’s authoritative identity solution into voice services, service providers will empower consumers to make decisions against unwanted calls, removing the pressure on carriers to confirm whether an incoming call is illegal.”

As the market leader and neutral trusted provider of caller ID services in the U.S., Neustar delivers a caller name service that authenticates display names with the calling party telephone number across 100 million home telephones. Neustar has shown that using analytics to detect illegal robocall activity allows caller information to be categorized, augmented with useful information, and presented to the consumer over the calling name and number display. Using this technology, the consumer is alerted to potentially suspect numbers, and can then decide whether to answer. Neustar also offers businesses and organizations a mechanism to designate DNO numbers, personalize how their caller name appears on phone calls, and ensure legitimate calls are not inadvertently blocked or tagged as suspicious.  .

Along with delivering Trusted Call solutions, Neustar is working with communication industry leaders, such as ATIS, to develop and test caller authentication standards through the Neustar Trust Lab and also provide trusted customer calling experiences.

In addition to its Caller ID and Trusted Call solutions, Neustar serves as the North American Numbering Plan Administrator (NANPA) and the Thousands-block Pooling Administrator (PA) for the FCC.  As part of the FCC’s proceeding, Neustar committed to augmenting the data that it currently provides to service providers to assist them in identifying and blocking calls from invalid or unallocated phone numbers. Neustar also offered to develop a process to collect and share unassigned and DNO numbers that meets service provider and business needs to protect sensitive or competitive information.

To find out more about what this FCC ruling means for your business and sign up for our upcoming informational sessions, please go here.