Telecom Commercial Communication Customer Preference Regulation, 2018 notified: TRAI

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has notified Telecom Commercial Communication Customer Preference Regulation, 2018 that is proposed to curb the problem of Unsolicited Commercial Communication (UCC).

The regulations provide for:

  1. Registration of senders (businesses and telemarketers)

Through an easy registration processes, the business will be able assert their identity and build trust of the clients. This diminishes the ability of unknown entities reaching their customers with calls and messages that are fraudulent or otherwise of dubious nature.

2. Registration of Headers

Using headers intelligently to segregate different types of messages, businesses shall be able to help their clients manage, delete or store communications related to OTP’s, balance enquires, flight alerts, special offers, etc.

3. Registration of subscribers’ consent

Unscrupulous telemarketers today override the stated preference of the subscriber by claiming consent that may have been surreptitiously obtained. New regulations provide the subscriber with complete control over their consent and the ability to revoke the consent already granted, at their option. A major abuse of the current regulations would thus be stopped.

4. Message template

The concept of registered templates for both SMS and voice communication has been introduced to prevent deliberate mixing of promotional messages into the transactional stream. This will give relief to subscribers who feel targeted by unwanted communication today.

5. Fine-grained control over preferences

New regulations provide for fine grained control over preferences, including such options as the time window in which to allow specific types of unsolicited communication.

The salient features of the regulation are:

a) Adoption of Distributed Ledger Technology (or blockchain) as the RegTech to ensure regulatory compliance while allowing innovation in the market.

b) Co-regulation where Telecom Service Providers/ Access Providers establish and arrange the framework, which is legally backed by regulation.

c) Enabling compliance through innovation in technology solutions that are demonstrated in a regulatory sandbox.

d) Enhanced controls and new options for all entities to perform their functions and to carry on their businesses efficiently.

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