New Telecom Regulations by TRAI Require Telecom Companies to Identify Callers

On Friday, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) issued its final recommendations, endorsing the implementation of caller identification (caller ID) as a standard feature across national telecommunications networks. This proposal comes almost two years after the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) initially suggested it.

The final recommendations suggest that all telecom companies “should offer Calling Name Presentation (CNAP)” as an optional “supplementary service” to customers “upon their request.”

Trai has presented a technical blueprint for implementing caller identification to the government, and it has advised the government to mandate all telecom companies to initiate the service within a specified timeframe. Under the proposed CNAP model, incoming calls in India will display the name associated with the number registered with the telecom operator. This service is expected to function as an on-demand feature for users.

Trai has provided the Centre with a technical plan for implementing caller identification, and it has suggested that the government instruct all telecom companies to commence the service within a specified timeframe. The proposed CNAP model will enable incoming calls in India to display the name registered with a telecom operator for the corresponding phone number. This service is anticipated to operate as an on-demand feature for users.

Following the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) proposal in March 2022 to introduce caller identification services, TRAI initiated a consultation paper for Calling Name Presentation (CNAP) in November 2022. Subsequently, a consultation was conducted in March of the following year, leading to the recent release of the final recommendations.

The issuance of these recommendations brings the implementation of default caller ID services closer to fruition. Upon its launch, this feature is expected to compete with existing caller identification providers such as Truecaller, which operates on both ad-supported and subscription models for customers.

Telecom operators have yet to provide a statement regarding TRAI’s recommendations.

“In regards to CNAP, we do not perceive it as a competitive service compared to the comprehensive range of services and functionalities that Truecaller offers to our more than 374 million users. Leveraging our technology and AI capabilities, Truecaller extends beyond providing basic number identification,” stated a spokesperson from Truecaller.

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