TRAI Announces New Regulation to Curb Unwanted Calls and SMSes

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) today announce a new mechanism to effectively arrest pesky commercial calls and empowered consumers against unwanted calls and SMSes.

In order to find a solution to this problem, a separate numbering series 70XXXXXXXX will be allocated for telemarketers, so that all telemarketing calls can be easily identified.

Any call that comes from any number beginning with “70” will be a commercial call and the customer has the choice of receiving or not receiving the call. Therefore, even a customer who chooses not to register at all, has a choice. Likewise, a unique SMS header has been mandated for easy identification of commercial SMSs.

The New Regulations will be will be effective from 1st January, 2011 and it also mandate that no commercial communication, even for unregistered customers, shall be sent between 9.00 PM to 9.00 AM, so as not to disturb the customers at night.

According to the new regulation by TRAI, the defaulting telemarketers will be liable to pay heavy penalties. The telemarketers are required to enter into an agreement with the service provider before they get telecom resources. As part of the agreement, the telemarketers are required to commit that the following amounts would be deducted from the security offered by them. First offence Rs. 25,000; Second offence, 75,000; Third offence Rs 80,000; Fourth offence Rs 1,20,000; Fifth offence Rs. 1,50,000 and Sixth offence Rs. 2,50,000.

The Service Providers/Telecom operators are required to deduct these amounts and deposit the same with TRAI. In addition to being liable for deduction of security as indicated above, the telemarketer will be blacklisted on commission of the sixth offence. The telecom resources of the blacklisted telemarketer will be disconnected by all the service providers and will not be restored for a period of two years.

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  • Samrat March 17, 2011 1:33 pm

    Are there any more updates about this topic?
    I am hearing rumours now that the TRAI has issued certain regulations regarding the unlimited SMS schemes that the maximum no of SMS per day would be reduced to 100 from 500?

  • Nitin December 31, 2010 5:39 pm

    It is pain to delete SMS’s ( waste of time,energy (electricity)) and therefore having headers will not serve purpose.
    TRAI shoul have direct control of action and i.e. since they have DND , simplely to forward of unsolicited message or unsolicitd call no to a particular NO and TRAI can take action directly as they have DND data with them data to verify that the SMS is in fact unsolicited inspite of having registered in DND.

  • dskushwaha December 6, 2010 9:48 pm

    In place of DND (Do Not Disturb), DC (Do Call) registry should be there. i.e. Those who want such type of calls, may register their mobile number in Do Call Registry.
    These customers may be given some incentives so that more customers attract to get their number registered.

  • Shiva December 6, 2010 8:13 pm

    May be we need to change those morals. I think this TRAI regulation will work. come on! US citizens also faced telemarketing calls..

  • Pradeep Soundararajan December 3, 2010 1:32 pm

    I suspect there are understanding between the service provider and the telemarketer. I have lodged more than 15 complaints to my service provider and no action has been taken yet. I am registered with DND and yet I get a lot of messages and calls.

    The service provider promises action but probably uses this opportunity to get more money from the telemarketing folks or spammers.

    Moral of the story: If you are in India, expect such stuff and live a peaceful life. Don’t visit other countries and hope your country would have strong laws and law enforcement.

  • Gopinath December 3, 2010 12:18 pm

    ah..great news. Lets hope Govt is going to be strict on implementing these rules. Tele marketers always bug us…good to see rules punishing them

  • dskushwaha December 2, 2010 8:37 pm

    “The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations, 2010”. has following new features:

    (1) Telemarketer SMSes and calls will be categorized in 7 categories namely

    (i) Banking/Insurance/Financial products/credit cards;

    (ii)Real Estate;

    (iii)Education;

    (iv)Health;

    (v)Consumer goods and automobiles;

    (vi)Communication/Broadcasting/Entertainment/IT;

    (vii)Tourism and Leisure.

    You can either choose your categories (Do Call), or choose to be under the fully blocked category (Do not Call) or not to register at all.

    (2) Earlier its used to take upto 45 days for DNC registration to become effective, now its cut short to 7 days.

    (3) Service Provider shall send any commercial communication, either directly or by mixing such communication with service communication, through voice call or SMS or Unstructured Supplementary Service Device (USSD) unless specifically opted, to a subscriber whose name is registered in the National Customer Preference Register.

    (4) No SMS Pack for more than 100 SMSs per day to any subscriber other than telemarketer.

    PROCEDURE FOR REGISTRATION OF COMPLAINT (TOLL FREE)

    Call to 1909 or SMS to 1909 in following format: “COMP TEL NO 70XXXXXXXX, dd/mm/yy, Time hh:mm”

  • dskushwaha December 2, 2010 3:23 pm

    As part of the agreement, the telemarketers are required to commit that the following amounts would be deducted from the security offered by them. First offence Rs. 25,000; Second offence, 75,000; Third offence Rs. 80,000; Fourth offence Rs. 1,20,000; Fifth offence Rs. 1,50,000 and Sixth offence Rs. 2,50,000

    That amount should be credited to the customers account (not necessarily in terms of cash but in terms of Free Minutes/SMS packs).

  • Merc December 2, 2010 1:52 pm

    very good move

  • Sudeep Das December 2, 2010 1:10 pm

    Very Good, Thanks to TRAI. But Pending another decision on VAS by TRAI.

  • Manoj Abhigyan December 2, 2010 12:49 pm

    Keshav Jha :
    2-3 mahine se DND activate rahne ke baad bhi calls aur SMS jam ke aane lage hain. Call service provider se nahin bhi aaye lekin Msg to service provider ke bhi aate hain. Sabse ganda BSNL hai. BSNL ke anusaar DND activate karwane se Telecaller call nahin kar sakte lekin BSNL ke call aur Msg band nahin honge.

    Yes, you are right Keshav ji. Even after activation of DND in BSNL they don’t stop their own calls and messages.

  • Keshav Jha December 2, 2010 11:24 am

    2-3 mahine se DND activate rahne ke baad bhi calls aur SMS jam ke aane lage hain. Call service provider se nahin bhi aaye lekin Msg to service provider ke bhi aate hain. Sabse ganda BSNL hai. BSNL ke anusaar DND activate karwane se Telecaller call nahin kar sakte lekin BSNL ke call aur Msg band nahin honge.

  • Abhishek December 2, 2010 10:18 am

    Its good move .much awaited regulation finally has seen the day ..some relief for customers those are registered with DND , as well those are not

  • Benny December 2, 2010 9:53 am

    My main problem is my operator’s telemarketing. I have BSNL and AIrtel numbers and i get calls in both numbers for caller tunes, ringtones etc. I had registered for DND but still no use. I wish even operators ads are from ’70’ series numbers so that i can beware.

  • Santu Sovan Mandal December 2, 2010 9:05 am

    PD :

    Manoj Abhigyan :

    dskushwaha :

    PD :
    This move by TRAI gives relief to subscribers from telemarketing by firms including bankers, FI,etc. But what about the nuisance by the SERVICE PROVIDERS themselves ? They resort unilateral activation VAS which are abominable in nature obsolete in utility. Recently the BSNL activated “Christian Religious” related VAS in my number. I am not a Hindu fundamentalist but this act of BSNL really annoyed me greatly and had to talk rudely with the BSNL Call centre (including their boss)personnel even to stop sending their religious sermons, leave alone refunding the Rs. 15/-. They reiterate that I asked for it ! Earlier, the Airtel did similar act – activated “Love jokes” in my cell- To confirm their absurdity I asked them to verify DOB and understand its relevance! Afterwards I nearly kept the sim out of bounds of the mobile. To my surprise when the sim was inserted today (1/12/10) Airtel deducted Re 1/- for five days from 21/11 to 25/11 – from a SWITCHED OFF Mobile. In both the cases, the service providers insisted that I asked for it !
    The danger from telemarketing can be identified and curbed, but how can we get protection from PROTECTOR themselves ? So the real danger is within !

    Yes, calls from service provider often comes when you are on roaming and incoming is chargeable.
    In my case cricket pack was activated by RGSM on my mobile when it was not in service area (not even roaming area) for more than a month. I do not like cricket and it was really annoying.
    A Handbook for Consumers from the Telecom Regulator (by Trai) http://www.trai.gov.in/cp/cphandbook.pdf has clear instruction on activation of VAS at Page 30/31 Para 4.4
    Such type of VAS activation by service provider will not stop unless TRAI makes it mandatory to take written request by consumer for any VAS.

    Yes, the only solution is written consent by customer for any VAS.

    In fact I had written to TRAI and the nodal officers of respective service providers (SP) on each occasion injustice done in respect of VAS. In some cases refund too was received. But their covert acts continues and the gullible and illiterates still suffers. Caller tune activations are the most common cases if violation of TRAI’s explicit instructions. SPs conveniently ignore TRAI directives on many other unilateral actions that costs them dearly. (pl. note even the now infamous Raja ignored PM too). Solution: Visit the gallery and given standing instructions IN WRITING requirements of VAS and don’t forget to receive an acknowledgement. May be to some extent they will be scrupulous enough, for MNP will act as Damocles sword ! Further IF someone concerned from SP’s PR offices is visiting our blogs in TT – Beware a strong feeling is brewing

    You all people are right. But don’t be pessimist everytime. Let’s see what happens. Atleast something good for consumers are going on. See, we never expected call rates to be such low even in a year ago; we never expected internet @98/-; we never expected 3g unlimited @700/-; we never thought that MNP will arrive in India even in future; BUT ALL OF THESE HAPPENED. So,let’s be an optimist.

  • abhijith December 1, 2010 11:40 pm

    oh god . . . All eye washing . . After some days story of goverment is same . . This all to make us a brain wash. . To make belive govt acting strictly . . Soon u can realise it . . Bec their real face of corruption we know it . . Oly they can eye wash us by doing this . . . After all corruption heat turned off . . Story ill be old . . .

  • vitas December 1, 2010 10:18 pm

    ‘DND’ rock’s. . .

  • PD December 1, 2010 9:06 pm

    Manoj Abhigyan :

    dskushwaha :

    PD :
    This move by TRAI gives relief to subscribers from telemarketing by firms including bankers, FI,etc. But what about the nuisance by the SERVICE PROVIDERS themselves ? They resort unilateral activation VAS which are abominable in nature obsolete in utility. Recently the BSNL activated “Christian Religious” related VAS in my number. I am not a Hindu fundamentalist but this act of BSNL really annoyed me greatly and had to talk rudely with the BSNL Call centre (including their boss)personnel even to stop sending their religious sermons, leave alone refunding the Rs. 15/-. They reiterate that I asked for it ! Earlier, the Airtel did similar act – activated “Love jokes” in my cell- To confirm their absurdity I asked them to verify DOB and understand its relevance! Afterwards I nearly kept the sim out of bounds of the mobile. To my surprise when the sim was inserted today (1/12/10) Airtel deducted Re 1/- for five days from 21/11 to 25/11 – from a SWITCHED OFF Mobile. In both the cases, the service providers insisted that I asked for it !
    The danger from telemarketing can be identified and curbed, but how can we get protection from PROTECTOR themselves ? So the real danger is within !

    Yes, calls from service provider often comes when you are on roaming and incoming is chargeable.
    In my case cricket pack was activated by RGSM on my mobile when it was not in service area (not even roaming area) for more than a month. I do not like cricket and it was really annoying.
    A Handbook for Consumers from the Telecom Regulator (by Trai) http://www.trai.gov.in/cp/cphandbook.pdf has clear instruction on activation of VAS at Page 30/31 Para 4.4
    Such type of VAS activation by service provider will not stop unless TRAI makes it mandatory to take written request by consumer for any VAS.

    Yes, the only solution is written consent by customer for any VAS.

    In fact I had written to TRAI and the nodal officers of respective service providers (SP) on each occasion injustice done in respect of VAS. In some cases refund too was received. But their covert acts continues and the gullible and illiterates still suffers. Caller tune activations are the most common cases if violation of TRAI’s explicit instructions. SPs conveniently ignore TRAI directives on many other unilateral actions that costs them dearly. (pl. note even the now infamous Raja ignored PM too). Solution: Visit the gallery and given standing instructions IN WRITING requirements of VAS and don’t forget to receive an acknowledgement. May be to some extent they will be scrupulous enough, for MNP will act as Damocles sword ! Further IF someone concerned from SP’s PR offices is visiting our blogs in TT – Beware a strong feeling is brewing

  • BOSS December 1, 2010 7:41 pm

    Simple but strong initiative!

  • Manoj Abhigyan December 1, 2010 7:16 pm

    dskushwaha :

    PD :
    This move by TRAI gives relief to subscribers from telemarketing by firms including bankers, FI,etc. But what about the nuisance by the SERVICE PROVIDERS themselves ? They resort unilateral activation VAS which are abominable in nature obsolete in utility. Recently the BSNL activated “Christian Religious” related VAS in my number. I am not a Hindu fundamentalist but this act of BSNL really annoyed me greatly and had to talk rudely with the BSNL Call centre (including their boss)personnel even to stop sending their religious sermons, leave alone refunding the Rs. 15/-. They reiterate that I asked for it ! Earlier, the Airtel did similar act – activated “Love jokes” in my cell- To confirm their absurdity I asked them to verify DOB and understand its relevance! Afterwards I nearly kept the sim out of bounds of the mobile. To my surprise when the sim was inserted today (1/12/10) Airtel deducted Re 1/- for five days from 21/11 to 25/11 – from a SWITCHED OFF Mobile. In both the cases, the service providers insisted that I asked for it !
    The danger from telemarketing can be identified and curbed, but how can we get protection from PROTECTOR themselves ? So the real danger is within !

    Yes, calls from service provider often comes when you are on roaming and incoming is chargeable.
    In my case cricket pack was activated by RGSM on my mobile when it was not in service area (not even roaming area) for more than a month. I do not like cricket and it was really annoying.
    A Handbook for Consumers from the Telecom Regulator (by Trai) http://www.trai.gov.in/cp/cphandbook.pdf has clear instruction on activation of VAS at Page 30/31 Para 4.4
    Such type of VAS activation by service provider will not stop unless TRAI makes it mandatory to take written request by consumer for any VAS.

    Yes, the only solution is written consent by customer for any VAS.

  • dskushwaha December 1, 2010 6:50 pm

    PD :
    This move by TRAI gives relief to subscribers from telemarketing by firms including bankers, FI,etc. But what about the nuisance by the SERVICE PROVIDERS themselves ? They resort unilateral activation VAS which are abominable in nature obsolete in utility. Recently the BSNL activated “Christian Religious” related VAS in my number. I am not a Hindu fundamentalist but this act of BSNL really annoyed me greatly and had to talk rudely with the BSNL Call centre (including their boss)personnel even to stop sending their religious sermons, leave alone refunding the Rs. 15/-. They reiterate that I asked for it ! Earlier, the Airtel did similar act – activated “Love jokes” in my cell- To confirm their absurdity I asked them to verify DOB and understand its relevance! Afterwards I nearly kept the sim out of bounds of the mobile. To my surprise when the sim was inserted today (1/12/10) Airtel deducted Re 1/- for five days from 21/11 to 25/11 – from a SWITCHED OFF Mobile. In both the cases, the service providers insisted that I asked for it !
    The danger from telemarketing can be identified and curbed, but how can we get protection from PROTECTOR themselves ? So the real danger is within !

    Yes, calls from service provider often comes when you are on roaming and incoming is chargeable.
    In my case cricket pack was activated by RGSM on my mobile when it was not in service area (not even roaming area) for more than a month. I do not like cricket and it was really annoying.
    A Handbook for Consumers from the Telecom Regulator (by Trai) http://www.trai.gov.in/cp/cphandbook.pdf has clear instruction on activation of VAS at Page 30/31 Para 4.4

    Such type of VAS activation by service provider will not stop unless TRAI makes it mandatory to take written request by consumer for any VAS.

  • Rajesh Bhupati December 1, 2010 6:43 pm

    Finally!!! Good Move… :-)

  • PD December 1, 2010 6:14 pm

    This move by TRAI gives relief to subscribers from telemarketing by firms including bankers, FI,etc. But what about the nuisance by the SERVICE PROVIDERS themselves ? They resort unilateral activation VAS which are abominable in nature obsolete in utility. Recently the BSNL activated “Christian Religious” related VAS in my number. I am not a Hindu fundamentalist but this act of BSNL really annoyed me greatly and had to talk rudely with the BSNL Call centre (including their boss)personnel even to stop sending their religious sermons, leave alone refunding the Rs.15/-. They reiterate that I asked for it ! Earlier, the Airtel did similar act – activated “Love jokes” in my cell- To confirm their absurdity I asked them to verify DOB and understand its relevance! Afterwards I nearly kept the sim out of bounds of the mobile. To my surprise when the sim was inserted today (1/12/10) Airtel deducted Re 1/- for five days from 21/11 to 25/11 – from a SWITCHED OFF Mobile. In both the cases, the service providers insisted that I asked for it !

    The danger from telemarketing can be identified and curbed, but how can we get protection from PROTECTOR themselves ? So the real danger is within !

  • Deep Parikh December 1, 2010 6:02 pm

    Good Move…atleast the call on Pranab Mukherjee in Parliament by some telecaller, brought peace for users!!!

  • dskushwaha December 1, 2010 5:58 pm

    a separate numbering series 70XXXXXXXX will be allocated for telemarketers, so that all telemarketing calls can be easily identified.

    Mobile manufacturer/Application developer should now give a call blocker which can block calls and SMSs originating from 070XXXXXXXX, +9170XXXXXXXX or 70XXXXXXXX.

  • Kaushik Maitra December 1, 2010 5:55 pm

    awesome move!!

  • Amit.G December 1, 2010 5:53 pm

    Guys any news abt MNP experience, did anybody ported ter number???

  • hardeep December 1, 2010 5:50 pm

    wont help much….. unless there are clear guidelines as to how to complain about those defaulting….. and quick punishment too!

  • Jagadeesh December 1, 2010 5:43 pm

    Good decision. Thank u TRAI.

  • Webly December 1, 2010 5:36 pm

    good.

  • vishal 9354654542 December 1, 2010 5:32 pm

    TRAI is going WORLD CLASS

  • TREMERIN DSOUZA December 1, 2010 5:23 pm

    At last some good and tough rules after rajas exit.

  • jslaolin December 1, 2010 5:14 pm

    Welcome move TRAI !!

  • dayle December 1, 2010 5:13 pm

    excellent move, now fingers crossed that there is no scam that follows!