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MattN
Just Moved In
Status: New Idea

Hi, Since moving to Telus I have had an increase in Scam calls.

I had never experienced a scam call until i moved to Canada. 

Either New Zealand doesn't have scam/spoofed calls (unlikely) or the telecommunication companies have done their due diligence and eliminated the problem for customers.

 

Canada is fortunate in the fact that communication lines are through three companies; Bell, Rogers, and Telus. 

With spoofing it is 'hard' to track the origin, however its not difficult to track the network they are using. 

I propose that Telus, works with Rodger, and Bell and in conjunction with Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre to do their due diligence for their customers.

 

Tracking a call to the original network should be relatively easy with then that network operator looking into the PBX switch 'they' supplied that customer. then working with law enforcement to eliminate the problem. 

 

Its a very common, reply to a problem here in Canada of "oh that's just the way it is"

Not Good Enough! With a ongoing Covid-19 crisis, and unemployment rising as a result. Some customers may not be able to spot a scam caller. So your reactive method of a random number to trick robots is not efficient in a population susceptible to scammers.

Therefore, do your due diligence Telus. be proactive instead of reactive, and work towards a solution instead of a band-aid fix. Plus its a great marketing campaign during this time. 

8 Comments
Nighthawk
Community Power User
Community Power User

Most of the scam calls originate outside Canada. With the internet, tracking calls back to their source is a lot harder, if not nearly impossible in some cases. Plus the law enforcement agencies in the countries where the scammers reside will typically only take action if one of the victims reports the scam to them directly. That typically never happens since the victim is in another country and likely won't be able to identify the source or country of origin for the call. In some cases victims of the scams won't come forward out of embarrassment. Plus the telecom companies in those countries don't have to share information with companies in other countries. The scammers know this. The scams are not just a Canadian thing. The Americans, the United Kingdom and many other countries are affected by these scammers.

 

Telus' Call Control feature is one tool they've released to assist people in blocking robo-calls.

 

One solution that is close to being ready is the STIR/SHAKEN (Secure Telephone Identity Revisited/Signature-based Handling of Asserted Information Using Tokens) technology. The CRTC wants Canadian telecoms to implement it by September 30, 2020. It won't prevent the scammers from calling you but in some cases it can help make it easier to identify suspicious calls. Using Call Control to block the robo-calls will likely still be needed.

 

Some reading on the scams:

- https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/cra-phone-tax-scam-marketplace-1.4830141

- https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/cra-phone-tax-scam-marketplace-1.5255817

gwinegarden
Just Moved In

And yet, here we are in October 2021 and it appears that we are still waiting for STIR/SHAKEN.  I can find no information regarding it the Telus website.

Nighthawk
Community Power User
Community Power User

The CRTC has a deadline of November 30, 2021 currently. That is unless they grant Bell more extensions since Bell was asking for June 1, 2022 to allow for the technology to be sufficiently tested before rolling it out. (CRTC decision) (News article)

 

None of the other big phone service providers have a STIR/SHAKEN info page up yet. The only recogizable Canadian service provider that seems to have any info posted about STIR/SHAKEN is Virgin. Virgin (Bell) does have a page up about STIR/SHAKEN and they appear to be limiting the use of it in most situations. That includes limiting it to certain cellular phones (LG G5 and Samsung S20 family only) on the latest firmware.

 

One important thing they list is:

 

In addition, for STIR/SHAKEN to work, the person calling you must be:

  • A Virgin Plus postpaid member with Voice over LTE, Video over LTE or Wi-Fi Calling services within network coverage using any device.

If the caller is using a different service provider, STIR/SHAKEN will not be enabled.


 

gwinegarden
Just Moved In

Thanks for the update.

The goal posts keep moving.  I knew the timeframe moved from 2020 (as above) to 2021 but last that I heard it was June/July.

I am not expecting perfection but would like a few fewer calls from "Visa Security" and "the CRA".

Cheers.

xray
Guardian

We have call control on our 4 mobile phones and landline. We have not received a single one of these calls since. I really don't care when STIR/SHAKEN will be implemented because it will have no impact for me.

SeanFordyce
Just Moved In

The feature Telus offers is not helpful to anyone who must receive calls they do not know regularly, get calls from people who do not speak English or French, get calls from people for business or job search reasons where they cannot put the caller through hoops.

 

The Stir Shaken is to verify numbers that show up as Canadian as to whether they can be traced back in Canada to that number. If they are then it is verified. If they are not (including international calls pretending to be Canadian) then they show up as unverified. It does not stop the call but it lets the user know whether or not to answer. It also should be possible to class those calls so that they ring on silent for example.

 

This is obviously a valuable feature and one Canadians have been waiting for. It will prevent enough calls that these calls to Canada would become less profitable and maybe even reduce the attempts.

 

The carriers in Canada are all pretending that it is not happening despite the final, now past, deadline of November 30, 2021. They have not warned their tech support or prepared them adequately to answer questions (I had to educate tech support on this today). They are not informing their customer service about this. They are not posting anything on their website. This is a poor level of customer service regarding what is a national news story (google stir shaken). 

 

After a long time today - that I will not be paid for - I learned that this is apparently available for one device: the Google pixel. Hard to imagine anyone thinking this is meeting the deadline. 

 

So here we are: reading the forums from customers trying to find out what is going on when Telus is not talking. Here we are after the legal deadline wondering when our devices will get this feature. 

 

I pity the Telus employees who answer the phone. The one I spoke to was very nice. These people are being thrown to the wolves if unprepared for calls on this. Try to be nice to them. It won't be there fault but somehow Telus has to understand people will try to find alternate means to hold them to account on this. This was not optional. It was a legal obligation they have to their customers. People will expect compensation.

SeanFordyce
Just Moved In

Sorry- in my haste there rather than their. Also when I say Google pixel is the only device - by that I mean on Telus. I have no idea which phone have this on other carriers.

gwinegarden
Just Moved In

The deadline has been extended, at least, twice.  There is no further excuse for any delay.