FCC Establishes a Dispute Resolution Process for Carriers

On Thursday, the FCC adopted new rules establishing what officials say is a fair and consistent process by which the agency can review actions affecting a carrier’s ability to comply with the Commission’s anti-spoofing caller ID authentication rules.

To combat illegal spoofing, the STIR/SHAKEN standards — created with industry participation, Inside Towers reported — are a common digital language used by phone networks, allowing valid information to pass from carrier to carrier. It allows most caller ID information to be verified from end-to-end. If it’s not verified, the framework enables carriers and third-party consumer protection services like call blocking apps to use that information to inform call blocking or warning services.  

Voice service providers were required to implement the anti-spoofing STIR/SHAKEN caller ID authentication framework in their IP networks by June 30. To participate, a provider must have a digital “token.” 

The private governance authority that oversees the STIR/SHAKEN framework may revoke that token if the carrier originates or passes on illegally spoofed calls. FCC Commissioners on Thursday voted on an appeal process for telecoms unhappy with a revocation decision.

During the vote, FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said concerning STIR/SHAKEN, “[T]he more of it we put into our networks, the fewer junk calls we’ll all receive.”

Specifically speaking about the appeals formula the agency put in place, she said: “Because due process matters, we clarify here the precise procedure to allow carriers with revoked tokens to appeal their decision to the FCC. This is the right thing to do.”

By Leslie Stimson, Inside Towers Washington Bureau Chief

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