SMS Spam: TRAI to Block Bulk International SMS Beginning with Alphanumeric Combination

When TRAI issued the regulation to block SMS spam messages, many of the spammers took international routes and started routing SMS through servers located outside India. Generally such SMSes originated from Germany, Sweden, Nauru, Fiji, Cambodia, Bosnia, Albania, Grenada, UK, Jersey, Sint Maarten, Tonga, Vanuatu, Namibia, Panama, Antigua and Barbuda etc. These SMSs contain the headers which are alphanumeric or starting with +91 or numbers with international codes.

TRAI today issued a  direction to all the Access Providers and the ILD operators mandating them to take the following steps, within 30 days, keeping in view the time required to put the necessary system in place:

  • All international SMS  containing alphabet header or alphanumeric header  or +91 as originating country code should not be delivered through the network.
  • If any source or number from outside the country generates more than two hundred SMS per hour with similar ‘signature’, the same  should not be delivered through the network. However, such restriction shall not be applicable on blackout days.
  • Only valid codes associated with the network  of those entities  with whom agreements have been signed by the Access Providers shall be allowed in the network

Operators have been asked to implement the rule within 30 days [source: TRAI release/pdf]

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