TRAI- DO NOT CALL REGISTRY-Relief to mobile phone users- Part II


In continuation of Part I which mostly cover the mobile users, this part covers the telemarketing agencies and service providers.

Registration  of Telemarketers

In order to have control on telemarketing agencies, the  procedure for registration of telemarketers with TRAI is simplified.  They got the facility of registering  online with TRAI with payment facility. The registration will be complete as soon as payment is made online. The telemarketing agencies that have  their registration with TRAI already has to re-register now under the  above said 7 categories.

  1. The  telemarketers are required to enter into an agreement with the service  providers before they get telecom resources for marketing. The agreement  covers demand and receipt of sufficient deposit money from telemarketing  companies towards penalties. The penalty amounts are also specified in the  agreement and if any breach of TRAI guidelines is there in respect of DNC  terms, service providers can deduct the amount from the security offered  by telemarketing companies. The penalty for first offence will be  Rs.25000/- ; second offence Rs.75000; third offence Rs.80000; fourth  offence Rs.120000; Fifth offence Rs.150000 and sixth offence Rs. 250000. The Service providers are required to deposit the amount deducted with  TRAI.
  2. In addition to penalty, the telemarketer  will be blacklisted on commission of the sixth offense. The telecom  resources of the blacklisted telemarketer will be disconnected by all the  service providers as per instruction issued by TRAI based on details of sixth offense from any one of the service provider . This disconnection will be  for a period of two years.
  3. A  separate numbering series 70XXXXXXXX ( ten digit number starting with 70  as first two digits) will be allocated for telemarketers so that all  telemarketing calls can be easily identified. Any call comes from any  number beginning with 70 will be commercial call and the customer has the  choice of receiving or not receiving the call. Thus even if any one not  registered with DNC registry has a choice of receiving or not receiving   the call. The Service Provider has to provide a unique SMS header for easy  identification for commercial messages.
  4. Before  sending SMSs/calls, the telemarketing companies should ensure that they  are sending the message only to the needy and not to ‘DNC’ category. These  are again filtered by service providers before allowing SMSs/calls through  their cables. Thus there will be double filters to remove any unsolicited  SMSs /calls.
  5. In  order to have control on telemarketing agencies/telemarketers, TRAI  directed that no service provider shall provide packages containing more  than 100 SMS per day.
  6. Sometimes,  SMS of unsolicited commercial communication from unregistered ordinary  subscriber is given. If complaint is received by service providers about  these subscribers, then the concerned subscriber will be warned on first  instance and if it is repeated for second time, his connection will be  disconnected.
  7. In  order to allow or facilitate genuine communication between agencies having  commercial transactions with their clients, TRAI has allowed transactional  messages to be exempt from this ‘DNC”. Transactional messages are normally  from banks/insurance companies/stock brokers or telecom service providers  giving information relating to their customers’ accounts or fromairlines/railways to their passengers regarding their flight /train  schedules or from educational institutions to the parents. But transactional messages should be allowed in SMS form only and no promotional content will be allowed.

C.R. Venkata Ramani

(AICWA)

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