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February 18th, 2016

Neustar’s Smart ID Will Change How the Mobile Industry Sees Caller Identity

hand on cell phone looking at information with thumb

When it comes to mobile Caller ID, smartphone owners are feeling outnumbered. In the U.S. market, where Caller ID has the largest uptake, over ninety percent of landline phones feature Caller ID service, versus two percent for mobile phones. The remaining ninety-eight percent of mobile phones rely on data stored in their user’s contact lists to identify incoming calls. In international markets, the uptake of Caller ID service is lower still, and in some cases not even available to mobile consumers. In the mobile world, it turns out, you don’t know whom you don’t know.

Instead of adapting to anonymity, mobile phone users have developed a fear of the unknown. Ninety-seven percent of business calls go unanswered, a point supported by Neustar’s observation that ninety percent of business calls are not in a user’s contact list. And callers fare only slightly better in voicemail, as eighty-two percent of voicemails from unknown callers go ignored. Clearly, there is a disconnect between identity and mobility, which becomes even more important when you consider the security risks introduced by mobile ID spoofing, phishing, and fraud.

At Neustar, we believe there’s a better way to handle mobility, identity, and security. We call it Smart ID and we think it has the power to revolutionize the mobile calling experience. The traditional Caller ID experience itself has changed little over the last 20 years: it consists of a name, a number, maybe a location, all of it limited to fifteen characters on the tiny display of a fixed phone. Smart ID is a next-generation Caller ID service designed for the multimedia capabilities of today’s smartphones. It can feature full names, images, websites/social media links, and even advertisements. Smart ID also leverages Neustar’s national number database (the industry’s largest) to authenticate and verify caller identities so smartphone owners can be confident that callers are who they claim to be.

When you insert Smart ID into the conversation, mobile calls have a much higher likelihood of making a connection:

  • For industries such as banking and healthcare, Smart ID can ensure that calls are appropriately identified and flagged (e.g., fraud alerts) and, most importantly, answered rather than languishing in voicemail;
  • For business owners, Smart ID can create e-business cards that display contact information, logos, advertisements and more that not only increase the likelihood of user engagement but can also be conveniently saved on smartphones for future reference;
  • For smartphone owners, Smart ID can display authenticated security credentials for verified numbers and flag suspicious numbers to reduce the risk of phone fraud, robocalls, etc.

Beyond the benefits to enterprises and consumers, Smart ID also provides an opportunity for mobile phone manufacturers and communications service providers (CSPs) to differentiate their offerings and increase revenue streams. Unlike Caller ID apps on the market today, Smart ID is a native feature that doesn’t require an app download. For CSPs, Smart ID can be delivered as a subscriber service over their networks to transform the calling experience for both consumers and enterprise customers.

For an up close and personal look at Smart ID in action, visit Neustar at Mobile World Congress in Hall 2.

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