Industry-wide vetting and authentication standards establish secure foundation for branded calling

First Orion and Hiya join Neustar, Inc., a TransUnion company, and Transaction Network Services (TNS) to form a strategic partnership advancing the industry’s call vetting and authentication standards with a single framework across the largest carriers in North America. This partnership helps enable secure, trusted calls to more than 285 million mobile devices and the 90 million households that rely on landline phone service.

By validating legitimate enterprises and authenticating calls through an integrated network, First Orion, Hiya, Neustar and TNS are helping to protect subscribers from phone scams, support enterprise-to-consumer communication and restore trusted calls to the telecom ecosystem. The partnership reduces industry fragmentation with a common process for enterprises to brand calls on all major carriers. Components include:

  • Vetting and Registration: Leveraging a proven approach, First Orion, Hiya, Neustar and TNS established best practices to validate the legitimacy of enterprises, and confirm they have the right to use associated telephone numbers and enterprise calling party data so they can more rapidly vet and register telephone numbers.
  • Authentication: Through a standards-based approach, this partnership provides new, seamless functionality to enterprises and contact centers so they can participate in the call authentication process. Using Out-of-Band SHAKEN, for instance, automates the end-to-end process of digitally validating calls.

Enterprises use branded calling to add their brand name, logo, call reason and more to the mobile display for outbound calls. This capability delivers a transparent customer experience and can help dramatically improve contact rates and customer engagement, which can increase revenues for enterprises. Through this partnership, each company monitors the delivery of branded calling services across the various networks, to help prevent scams and better protect consumers against bad actors who may attempt to misuse the service.

“The partnership’s extensive experience working with some of the largest enterprises in the U.S. allowed us to recognize the benefit of a standardized approach to vetting,” said Joe Stinziano, president and COO at First Orion. “Collectively, we support restoring trust in voice calling and helping organizations dramatically improve call engagement rates – while guarding against misuse by unauthorized parties.”

“Many service providers don’t have the ability to confidently vet their customers, or confirm the caller’s true identity at scale,” said Kush Parikh, president at Hiya. “Branded calls allow subscribers to make informed decisions about which calls to answer – and as result grow trust in the voice network. This partnership will add great value to communication service providers, enterprises, and consumers as the phone remains the preferred communications channel.”

“Vetting includes validating the legitimacy of the business, and confirming they have the right to use certain phone numbers and associated caller data. But it doesn’t end there. It’s a multi-dimensional process that spans the lifecycle of service delivery,” said James Garvert, senior vice president of Communications Solutions at Neustar. “It also impacts the entire ecosystem by paving the way for branded calling with rich content that can be verified and trusted.”

“Without a serious commitment to join forces in vetting customers and verifying legitimate traffic, bad actors will continue to destroy trust in the phone ecosystem,” said Bill Versen, president of the Communications Market for TNS.“This partnership now operates the largest single platform for delivering trusted calls to the market, with unmatched scale, authority, and intelligence. It’s an exciting time in the industry and we encourage other companies to join us in adopting this approach to help restore trust in the voice network.”