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    New TRAI regulations hinder banking services like SMS, OTPs

    New TRAI regulations hinder banking services like SMS, OTPs

    New TRAI regulations hinder banking services like SMS, OTPs
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    By CNBCTV18.com  IST (Published)

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    The process, known as scrubbing, was implemented after several delays. As such, telecom operators blocked unverified and unregistered SMSes.

    Have you been facing issues with delayed SMS since Monday (March 8)? Waiting endlessly to receive important text messages, such as one-time passwords (OTPs) for bank transactions, or to avail government facilities — CoWin registrations, Aadhaar updates, etc. — can make even the most patient of people restless.
    On Monday, a Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) guideline, as per which the contents of every SMS will have to be verified before it’s delivered, was implemented. The process, known as scrubbing, was implemented after several delays. As such, telecom operators blocked unverified and unregistered SMSes.
    The TRAI had set March 7 as the deadline to comply with the regulations. As telecom service providers (TSPs) started implementing the second phase of SMS regulation, the functioning of banks and e-commerce firms took a hit on Monday.
    On March 8, many banks had to bear the brunt of irate customers who didn’t get OTPs for many services including money transfers. However, defending their system, the operators attributed the disruption of SMS traffic to laxity among companies in adopting the regulatory standards. The telcos said telemarketers and businesses should comply with the standards set by TRAI.
    According to TRAI, many telemarketers show scant regard for customers’ preferences when it comes to consent, which may have been obtained furtively. With these new regulations, subscribers can have complete control over their consent, besides the ability to revoke the consent.
    A blockchain method is used to verify the content of every SMS and the unregistered ones are blocked.
    “The TSPs are following the TRAI regulations to address the issue of unsolicited commercial communication,” SP Kochhar, director-general of Cellular Operators Association of India, said.
    Last month, the Delhi High Court had directed TRAI to strictly ensure that telecom operators enforced regulations to stop the use of unsolicited commercial messages, and fake SMS headers to dupe customers. The SMS headers are unique IDs through which commercial text messages are sent.
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