India To Use Blockchain to fight Nuisance Calls
An Indian telecoms organization is planning on using blockchain technology to help fight pesky and unwanted telemarketer calls and messages in the country.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) issued a press release Tuesday, announcing they would use blockchain tech to quote “curb the problem of Unsolicited Commercial Communication”. In 2010, the TRAI initially started to fight this issue, creating a “Do Not Disturb” registry for subscribers to become a member of. However, unregistered telemarketers were still able to subvert this system, using SMS messages and ten-digit numbers to get their information through.
Via an open house discussion in the public forum, the TRAI came to the conclusion that they needed to “leverage technology and offer a more agile process to deal with the dynamic nature of the problem”.
Enter blockchain. The release states that a Distributed Ledger Technology will be used to enforce compliance, and to allow innovation in the market while doing so. The idea is to put the content of “Do Not Disturb” registry in the blockchain, a virtual “sandbox” where the info is available on a need to know basis, and cannot be tampered with, an issue with the previous system used.
The release notes this is the first instance in the world where such a technology is going to be used at this scale in the telecom sector.
Due to the new nature of blockchain tech, the TRAI will conduct demonstrations first. If the tech can show better control over tracking the users information, and detect unwanted telemarkers, then it seems it will be used more widely. The system will also give customers better ability to make a complaint against telemarketers if an infraction takes place.
TRAI chair R. S. Sharma iterates that “blockchain will ensure two things, non-repudiative and confidentiality. Only those authorized … will be able to access subscriber details and only when they need to deliver service.”