Spam has taken over phone calls. Last year, Americans received 46 billion robocalls; that’s over 2,000 robocalls per second! Phone carriers established spam algorithms to curb the tide, but their attempts aren’t perfect. When scammers spoof real phone numbers to make their spam more convincing, they can harm the reputation of real businesses who get their number flagged as “spam likely.” Thousands of business calls are incorrectly flagged as spam every day. As a result of the spam proliferation and carriers attempts to stop it, over 90% of people don’t answer calls from unknown numbers.

While spam may have a hold over phone calling today, new regulations intend to end their reign. In March 2020, the TRACED Act that requires voice providers to implement a robocall mitigation program was passed into law. Fifteen months later, the process known as STIR/SHAKEN is being implemented to combat spoofing and robocalls. All service providers are expected to follow the new standards surrounding robocalling.

How does STIR/SHAKEN work? When a business places an outbound call, the phone carrier sends out their number for verification. After it does so, Caller ID will show if that caller is verified (known to be who they claim) or likely spam. Three ratings are possible under this system: A for full (both customer and number are verified), B for partial (customer is verified but not number), and C for gateway (call origin not authenticated). As a result, spoofed numbers are instantly traceable, legitimate businesses can be verified, and consumers know which calls to trust.

Businesses benefit when customers don’t think their calls are spam. On top of the new rules, companies can reduce their risk of wrong labels by monitoring their numbers, mixing hot and cold leads, and having their number validated by a professional company.

Infographic Source: PhoneBurner