Telecom regulator Trai (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) has said entities such as banking, logistics and e-commerce that send bulk messages to customers must complete their registration process in three days, failing which they'll be barred from doing so.
The latest order comes a few days after Trai suspended the newly-implemented telemarketing norms for sending commercial text messages for one week as its earlier order led to disruption in SMS and one-time password (OTP) deliveries in various services.
Trai norms on content template checks and balances for text messages came into effect on Monday. But within hours, consumers reported issues with getting all kinds of SMSes on their phones because reportedly the filters used for blocking unsolicited messages also interfered with the genuine messages.
Experts say that the issue cropped up because a lot of companies who send these commercial SMSes (also called principle entities or PEs) failed to register with telcos ahead of the March 7 deadline.
Also read: TRAI's SMS fiasco: Who's to blame?
As per TRAI regulations, the PEs are required to register with telcos to assert their identity. The PEs are also required to register the headers with telcos to segregate different types of messages and block messages with dubious headers. This issue came to light last year when Paytm alleged that telcos like Airtel, BSNL and Jio were not blocking entities who were sending fraudulent messages to customers by using headers identical to Paytm.
"It has been decided that those principal entities that do not comply with the regulatory requirements within three days time period failing which the names of defaulting entities would be displayed on the website. Even after this period, if they fail to fulfil the regulatory requirements, they would not be allowed to send bulk communication using telecom resources," Trai said.
Principal entities, who need to send out messages, need to register with the messaging service provider, choose a header which will identify the entity in few characters, register content template, and take consumer consent.
The process was published by Trai under the Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations (TCCCPR), 2018, on July 19, 2018, and the regulations came into force on February 28, 2019.
With PTI inputs
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