CRTC Forces Telcos to Combat Unsolicited Calls in 90 Days

The CRTC (Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission) has set a 90-day deadline for wireless carriers to come up with a solution protecting the privacy of Canadians by allowing them to block unsolicited and illegitimate calls.

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“We strive to ensure all Canadians have adequate and reliable protection when using the communication system. In this case, telecommunications service providers are in the best position to develop and implement call management solutions for the millions of Canadians tired of receiving nuisance calls, just as they have done for e-mail and text messaging. We encourage Canadians to contact their service provider to find out what solutions they offer to protect themselves against nuisance calls,” said Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC.

The technical solutions developed by the telcos must be submitted to the regulator and will be subject to an approval process so as to “ensure a minimum level of protection” for subscribers.

In addition, the regulator is encouraging telcos to offer call management features to their subscribers. That offering must be submitted to the CRTC within 180 days. The call management services will filter calls, just like email filters.

In the press release announcing the 90-day deadline, the regulator also said it is prepared to take additional steps if telcos fail to provide “sufficient measures to protect Canadians against unwanted calls.” In addition, the CRTC plans to issue Call ID spoofing, which occurs when telemarketers hide their identity by displaying fictitious phone numbers when placing a call.

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