Feds say new technology could help ID robocalls before you pick up
If you’re being driven crazy by telemarketer and robocalls, there’s some good news on the horizon.
The feds say a new technology will will stop the people who make these annoying calls from pretending they are calling you from your local area.
According to Ian Barlow, the Do Not Call program coordinator for the Federal Trade Commission, STIR SHAKEN is a system “that will help verify whether callers have permission to use the displayed caller ID number.” He stressed this system will not block any calls but give you a clue to decide whether you should bother answering.
“What it will do instead is it will provide the telecom carriers with the ability to label calls — verified, unverified, partially verified. What they’re verifying is whether the caller ID number displayed is being used by the person who has permission to use it.”
The name of the program, STIR SHAKEN, stands for Secure Telephony Identity Revisited and Secure Handling of Asserted Tokens.
The acronym is a reference to British super-spy James Bond, who preferred his martinis shaken, not stirred.
According to Barlow, the STIR SHAKEN technology will create an identifying token for every call that’s made to your number, and that code will show up on your caller ID as number that’s either verified or unverified — the idea being if it’s unverified, it’s not from someone you know and trust.
Barlow noted the FTC does not regulate telecom carriers but his understanding is “industry intends to make this available to consumers at no cost.”
He hopes this will help stop a very irritating situation from getting worse.
“Robocalls or unwanted calls are our top complaint every month, roughly 500,000 per month," he said.
He said to lessen the chance of getting unwanted robo and telemarketer calls, register at donotcall.gov, where you can also file complaints.
You can contact reporter David Matthau at David.Matthau@townsquaremedia.com