To tighten the noose on telemarketers, Telephone Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recently launched a mobile application for telecom subscribers to register their complaints against pesky calls and SMSes in an easy way.
“We have stringent rule in place for checking promotional calls and SMS but companies are finding ways to bypass them. There has been issue in its enforcement. The new mobile app will help people in easily filing complaints and help us in monitoring such activities,” TRAI Chairman R S Sharma said today.
“The application is available on Android and will be soon launched for Apple iOS soon. It will ease filing of complaints and also help us in monitoring action taken by telecom operators on complaints,” TRAI Member Anil Kaushal said.
The DND services mobile app is an easy alternative for filing pesky calls and SMS complaints. Earlier, subscribers had option of filing complaint by forwarding to 1909 the SMS that they received from telemarketers and mention the mobile number from which they have received it along with date of receiving. The SMS option was not available for pesky calls.
Another option was to inform telecom operators through customer care number or through e-mail. The mobile app will show SMS in a list form and mobile numbers from the source. Customers need to click on the check box to select such SMSes or calls and then click on report option to file complaint.
As per rule, TRAI has mandated all telecom operators to disconnect telephone numbers from which a pesky call or SMS has originated on receipt of the first complaint. The name and address of that telephone subscriber shall then be shared with all other service providers and no service will be provided by any telecom resource in that name and address for a period of two years.
Besides, there is a provision where only registered telemarketers can make promotional or marketing calls and only to those numbers that are not registered with do-not-disturb list. The registered telemarketers have been allocated special number series, starting with 140 for making commercial calls. The regulations have provisions to impose fines of up to Rs 2.5 lakh on registered telemarketers if they are found flouting norms.
Further, the regulator issued Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference (Thirteenth Amendment) Regulations, 2013, which has provision to disconnect telecom connection of entities on whose behest a pesky call or SMS is sent.