CRTC Announces Program to Protect Canadians from Scammers

Phone spoofingThe Canadian Radio and Telecommunications Commission announced on Monday that it would implement a new framework meant to combat caller ID spoofing, by September 30, 2020.
The technology, called STIR/SHAKEN, is described as “essentially a digital fingerprint for telephone calls.” STIR [Secure Telephony Identity Revisited]/SHAKEN [Signature-based Handling of Asserted information using toKENs] would be used to help Canadians determine whether or not a call was being “spoofed.” This is excellent new for Canadians, as they continue to be plagued by phone calls from scammers, some of them purporting to be government officials or police officers. Spoofing occurs when the person making the call has made the call look like it is coming from the real government agency or police department. The unsuspecting receiver of the call is then tricked into believing that the caller really is who they say they are. This news is also in addition to an earlier announcement made by the CRTC that all major telecom providers implement a certain type of call blocking technology by December 19 of this year. The CRTC is also working with telecom providers on ways to trace nuisance calls back to their point of origin.  In November of this year, it was reported that Indian police raided and shut down a call centre that was targeting Canadians. While this is great news for Canadian Consumers, don’t expect the robo calls to stop anytime soon.  It’s still best to be vigilant when you receive unsolicited calls asking for your personal information.  The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC) also recommends that people not to give personal information such as a credit card number or Social Insurance Number over the phone, unless it’s to a trusted person or you initiated the call yourself. The OPC warns that reputable firms never ask for personal information without significant safeguards.

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