TRAI imposed a fine of Rs 2.8 crore on Bharti Airtel and Rs 1.01 crore on Vodafone Idea for failing to comply with the Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations (TCCCPR), 2018 for the December 2021 quarter.
With continued compliance to control Unsolicited Commercial Communication (UCC), both telecom operators were hit with financial disincentives (fine) of Rs. 2,81,39,000 and Rs 1,01,69,000 respectively, and stated in their respective fillings that they were reviewing the order and will evaluate the next steps.
The TCCCPR-2018 allows TRAI to regulate unsolicited commercial communications, using which the body has earlier issued multiple directives on spam. The rationale here is that it is the telecom operators responsibility to verify the identity of the telemarketer, and there is still a financial incentive for telecom operators to allow Bulk SMS and spam, because of which a disincentive needs to be created. This includes mandating the use of AI spam filters for calls and messages, issuing directions to stop the misuse of commercial message templates, among others.
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Why it matters: This is yet another step in TRAI’s efforts to curb spam calls and messages. It is critical to ensure compliance and filter out telemarketers indulging in spam misuse. Unsolicited communication consumes significant network resources. When spam messages overload networks, they can lead to congestion and reduced quality of service for customers.
This story was written by Lavanya Dahiya, Editorial Research Assistant at MediaNama.