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Fraud Prevention with STIR:SHAKEN

The Role of STIR/SHAKEN in Call Center Fraud Prevention

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Abbie Tabbilos

Marketing Content Writer

Have you ever received a phone call from someone claiming to be your bank, only to find out later that it was a scam? If so, you’re not alone. Scammers are using increasingly sophisticated techniques to trick people, and caller ID spoofing is one of their most effective tools. 

The good news is that Secure Telephone Identity Revisited and Signature-based Handling of Asserted Information Using toKENS, more simply known as STIR/SHAKEN, is a set of protocols and procedures designed to authenticate caller ID. 

STIR requires communicators to provide a digital signature or a way to authenticate messages when sending messages. When STIR is combined with SHAKEN, the technology that enables providers to use this signature to verify a call, you have a combination that will empower you to prevent fraud in your call center. 

Benefits of STIR/SHAKEN for call centers

It is vital that your customers trust you and your call center. If one of them were to receive a call from someone claiming to be one of your agents and then act in an unprofessional or unethical manner, the effects could be devastating.

For starters, this type of fraud could lead to compromised data, fines and other types of financial damage such as identity theft or unauthorized purchases. Ultimately, your contact center’s hard-earned reputation could be compromised. 

Luckily, STIR/SHAKEN makes it much more difficult for fraud to occur because consumers can now be warned ahead of time about potential scam risk. If a provider finds the caller’s digital signature to be valid, the caller ID information will be accurately displayed. However, if the signature is not valid, a warning message may be displayed or the call may simply be blocked altogether.

Besides helping to reduce instances of caller ID spoofing, STIR/SHAKEN can also help reduce telemarketing and robocalls. What exactly could this extra layer of security mean for your call center? Increased customer trust, enhanced brand reputation that comes from demonstrating your commitment to security and improved compliance are only the beginning. 

Challenges of STIR/SHAKEN for call centers

Providers were required to follow STIR/SHAKEN guidelines by verifying phone calls by the end of June 2021. While it has been beneficial in significantly reducing call center fraud risk, the technology does have its limitations.

First, it is important to set proper expectations. While STIR/SHAKEN has facilitated great strides in reducing call center fraud, it does not provide a solution to completely eliminate such risks. 

Second, the authentication process of STIR/SHAKEN does not currently have the capabilities to determine whether or not a call is legal, just whether the digital signature matches the claimed source of the call. 

Third, STIR/SHAKEN does not assist with international gateway calls, although this could very well be a possibility for the future.

Ultimately, despite the peace of mind STIR/SHAKEN offers, it is still important to take necessary precautions to prevent fraud, such as training employees and multilayered authentication. 

Additionally, there is a possibility that STIR/SHAKEN can impact your call center’s ability to get through to your own consumers. When calls are incorrectly labeled, they may be blocked. To prevent this from happening, avoiding improper phone number registration is essential.

Reaping the benefits of STIR/SHAKEN

STIR/SHAKEN is already a promising technology and it will only continue to improve in the future, making it an increasingly effective way to prevent fraud. 

As you take advantage of this useful technology-protocol combination, it is important to maintain your current fraud prevention measures and continuously monitor your results to make adjustments as needed.

Request a demo to learn more about how TCN can help your call center’s phone numbers become successfully authenticated, thus reinforcing your call center against fraudulent acts without experiencing difficulties in your own communication efforts.

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