T-Mobile’s Scam Shield adds new number verification

The TL;DR – spoofed numbers will show as spoofed now.

In the past when a car warranty expiration notice from a scam company robocalling you was to be delivered the scammer would fake a caller ID number somewhere in your area code, often the return number of someone completely unassociated. People are much more likely to pick up for local numbers.

This lead to many billions of “why are you calling me?” calls and subsequent “I haven’t touched my phone all day do I have to teach yet another person what spoofing a phone number is” responses.

Today, approximately 17 years after most people stopped answering their phones because the carriers let things go to hell, T-Mobile and most major carriers now authenticate that a cell number is actually originating from said number.

This will impact scammers to the tune of about $24 a month as they now have to purchase blocks of a couple hundred DIDs in area codes they’re hitting. (Note: prices reflect a conversation I had yesterday about 224 DIDs a company had to maintain, and may be different today).

That said, with verified numbers there’s a possibility that the FCC can actually start investigating more of these jerks. Maybe T-Mobile will fix their email to SMS spam gateway next…

Here’s the press release from T-Mobile (slightly format edited because cut and paste from Outlook suuuuucks):

T-Mobile just announced a major milestone for their industry-leading Scam Shield protection. The Un-carrier is the first US wireless provider to work with all other major networks to implement STIR/SHAKEN to fight number spoofing and further protect customers from scammers. T-Mobile is now working with Spectrum Voice from Charter Communications, effectively partnering with ALL major networks in the US to deliver number verification to customers. With these partnerships, T-Mobile now authenticates calls with wireless and network providers that collectively represent around 98% of wireless customers in the U.S.!

“T-Mobile was first to implement number verification in 2019 because protecting customers against scammers and spammers is one of the most important things we can do as an industry,” said Mike Sievert, CEO T-Mobile. “To date, T-Mobile has protected over 80 million customers from more than 33 billion suspect calls – and counting. With the combination of Number Verification, free Caller ID and the scam blocking tools in Scam Shield, and by working with network providers of all sizes, we are providing the industry’s most comprehensive scam and spam protection for free to all our customers and working every day to make scammers jobs impossible.”

T-Mobile customers can rest assured that when a call comes in from any of the major carriers, or any of several other smaller network providers, to T-Mobile’s network (or vice versa), the companies will be able authenticate it’s coming from the phone number displayed in Caller ID and has not been spoofed. This makes Caller ID even stronger in the fight against scam and robocalls, and with Scam Shield, all T-Mobile, Metro by T-Mobile and Sprint brand individuals, families and small business get free Caller ID — so for the millions of businesses and people not your contacts, if we know who’s calling, you’ll know who is calling.

T-Mobile currently provides STIR/SHAKEN implementations AT&T, Comcast, Spectrum Voice from Charter Communications, USCellular, and Verizon Wireless as well as Altice USA, Bandwidth, Brightlink, Clear Rate, Google Fi, Inteliquent, Intrado, Magicjack, Peerless, and Twilio. This puts them well ahead of the FCC’s June 2021 deadline to implement STIR/SHAKEN industry-wide.

Read more about today’s news here:
The T-Mobile Team

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Paul E King

Paul King started with GoodAndEVO in 2011, which merged with Pocketables, and as of 2018 he's evidently the owner. He lives in Nashville, works at a film production company, is married with two kids. Facebook | Twitter | Donate | More posts by Paul | Subscribe to Paul's posts

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