*We don’t see Trai’s proposed KYC-based caller ID mechanism as competitive service: Truecaller CEO – The Economic Times

Clipped from: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/telecom/telecom-news/we-dont-see-trais-proposed-kyc-based-caller-id-mechanism-as-competitive-service-truecaller-ceo/articleshow/91767018.cms?utm_source=ETTopNews&utm_medium=HPTN&utm_campaign=AL1&utm_content=23

Synopsis

The statement by Truecaller CEO and co-founder Alan Mamedi assumes significance as sector regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) is soon set to start consultation on framing a mechanism for caller’s KYC-based name to flash on phone screens when someone calls.

Swedish caller identification app Truecaller on Tuesday asserted that it does not see Trai‘s proposed KYC-based caller name display mechanism as “a competitive service”, and argued that the company with its technology and data, solves many more issues than a basic number identification service.

The statement by Truecaller CEO and co-founder Alan Mamedi assumes significance as sector regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) is soon set to start consultation on framing a mechanism for caller’s KYC-based name to flash on phone screens when someone calls.

The regulator has received a reference to begin consultation on the same from the Department of Telecom (DoT), TRAI chairman PD Vaghela had said last week.

Experts had opined that the new system, which Trai proposes to work on, would impact apps like Truecaller, which count India as a significant market.

In a statement on Tuesday, Truecaller CEO said: “Based on the information available at present, we do not see that this would be a competitive service comparable to the full range of services and functionality that Truecaller offers to our more than 310 million monthly active users.”

With its technology and data, Truecaller solves many more issues than a basic number identification service, Alan Mamedi added.

“We believe that the proposed Trai development can even be a driving catalyst for our continued growth in India, as more people discover our offerings. During our 13 years, we have seen many players — both private and state-driven — trying to enter this industry, and we are humble in the face of this great challenges it entails to ensure safe and reliable communication for everyone,” the top honcho said.

Citing reports about Trai initiating consultation to moot the mechanism for KYC-based caller name display, Truecaller said, “This is one of several similar initiatives from Trai over the past ten years, and Truecaller welcomes all attempts aimed at helping in the mission to make communications safer and more secure.”

“If the service described was to be developed, the assessment is that its implementation would take many years and require a successful collaboration with all major telecom operators,” Truecaller added.

Trai’s proposed mechanism is expected to help identify callers as per their KYC (Know Your Customer) and bring greater accuracy and transparency than some apps that identify callers based on crowdsourcing data.

Sources had said that once the framework for KYC-based new mechanism is worked out, the identity establishment will become more clear and legally tenable. It will also have a ripple effect, leading to a clean up of data on crowdsourcing apps, as there will be KYC linkages.

Industry ananlysts had stated last week that a KYC-based caller identification mechanism would safeguard users against rising instances of spam calls and fraud.

On Friday, Truecaller’s spokesperson had said: “We welcome any, and all actions in the mission to make communication safe and efficient.”

“Number identification is crucial to ending the menace of spam and scam calls and we, at Truecaller, have been working tirelessly towards this important mission for the past 13 years. We appreciate this move by Trai and would like to reiterate that we remain very supportive of this and any future initiatives they have,” the company spokesperson had then said.

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