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A Groundbreaking Initiative to Restore Trust in International Communications

Philippe Millet, the chair of i3forum, recently revealed an exciting initiative to restore trust in international communications with the establishment of the industry-wide One Consortium.

While we have progressively improved best practice and measures to combat Voice Fraud and made promising strides in Messaging, the fight continues. We have taken that challenge head-on with, for example, our efforts to enforce the joint i3forum/Global Leaders’ Forum (GLF) Code of Conduct, operational cooperation within the i3forum Fight Fraud Working Group, and our ongoing work on the Messaging Fraud workgroup, which builds on the work of organizations, such as MEF, GSMA or the Global Solutions Council.

However, the rapidly growing trend of unwanted/illegal communications (such as spamming, spoofing, robocalling) is posing a more significant challenge than traditional fraud. This surge is eroding the confidence of consumers, businesses, and the public in communications, leading to a rise in complaints and subsequent impact on our business.

The need is for an innovative, never-seen-before response rooted in collaboration not only within the industry but also with National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs). The urgency for cooperation has reached an all-time high. What makes this challenge unique is that any viable solution created to fight unwanted or illegal communications and restore trust should, and in fact must, involve the NRAs as they are responsible for creating the regulations. But critically, they can not fix these international problems on their own.

As required by their role, NRAs step in to safeguard the public, and while they have comprehensive authority domestically their reach on the international front remains limited. International traffic often lacks adequate cooperation between NRAs, resulting in multiple, disjointed requirements for International Carriers that are inconsistent, potentially inefficient, and costly to implement. This approach is neither sustainable for the industry nor effective in resolving the issue.

Currently, the NRAs are driving the process which is why our collaboration with them is vital, despite the fact that the traffic under discussion is often considered “legitimate” transit traffic. This issue cannot be resolved internally within the industry, marking a significant shift from traditional methods of combating fraud. This is why our initiative is not merely just another code of conduct. It’s important to note that this problem is not one that can be solved solely by NRAs or any single entity.

Our first step towards gaining the attention and cooperation of the NRAs involves demonstrating credibility, goodwill, and transparency within the industry. By unifying under this inclusive initiative launched by the i3forum and joining the One Consortium, we can work on proposals encompassing governance, self-regulation, policies, and supporting technologies. We’re not starting from scratch – numerous organizations are already working on the foundational aspects.

If we fail to take these steps, we risk living in a world where every National Regulatory Authority demands compliance with their unique requirements. However, if executed correctly, this initiative can safeguard communications and unlock untapped business potential in both retail and wholesale sectors based on Trusted Communications.

Details of the One Consortium are expected to be disclosed shortly.

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