Telcos started enforcing the Telecom Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations even as many merchants and payment gateways didn't register their SMS formats in time, leading to one-time passcodes and other important transactional messages getting blocked from delivery. Telecom companies were required starting March 8 midnight to "scrub" SMS messages that were not registered with a blockchain system maintained by telcos as required by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, the Economic Times reported. Even Co-WIN vaccination OTPs were reportedly affected. This may have been one of the largest-scale impacts of TRAI's long-running whack-a-mole efforts against spammers. MediaNama team members had trouble with card payments as well as net banking yesterday, across state-owned and private banks. ET reported citing industry sources that around a fifth of the daily billion-strong commercial SMS messages were sinkholed by the scrubbing, leaving them undelivered. The Cellular Operators Association of India said in a statement, “TSPs are following TRAI Regulations & have activated due process of Content scrubbing to address the issue of unsolicited commercial communication. TSPs has sent various communications to the principle entities to register their Content Template with the TSPs before March 7, 2021. We request all the PEs to get their content template registered with TSPs at the earliest, and help TSPs to address the issue of unsolicited commercial communication.” Telcos have put out newspaper ads to make legitimate SMS senders aware of the regulations, but there are so many businesses that use one-time passcodes, and so many formats per business,…
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