What Is STIR /SHAKEN? Why Should You Care?

STIR SHAKEN- All You Need to Know

The VoIP world is amazing. Some really useful VoIP solutions make the VoIP part of our routine life, such as a call center solution, IP PBX system, conferencing solution, app to app calling software, etc. From end-users to B2B companies, everyone uses one or more types of VoIP solutions as they can meet all sorts of needs. In fact, some businesses and even industries are completely dependent on VoIP solutions such as a call center industry is dependent on a call center solution.

As the popularity of VoIP is increasing so fast, VoIP threats and attacks have also increased. One of the most common threats in the VoIP industry is call spoofing. To prevent VoIP users from call spoofing and its consequences, STIR / SHAKEN has come into existence. In this article, we will share what is STIR and SHAKEN and why you should care about them.

What is call spoofing?

To understand STIR / SHAKEN, it is necessary to understand call spoofing.

The hackers or attackers spoof the caller ID to present themselves as someone known to the call recipient. In simple words, the caller ID gets changed and therefore, the customer or end-user believes the call is someone from he knows such as the last number he dialed to a call center or government department, etc. Spoofed robocalls have become one of the common issues in many VoIP networks.

What is STIR / SHAKEN?

The STIR / SHAKEN is an international standard for preventing call spoofing in the VoIP industry.

The calls usually traverse from a private network of a caller to the public network of the caller and from the public network of a call recipient to the private network of a call recipient.

STIR / SHAKEN is a set of standards, which assigns a digital signature, some people referred to it as a token or an identifier, to the caller ID. This will be further encrypted, so hackers cannot temper the caller ID. The identifier attached by the carrier of a caller will be unique and follow the STIR / SHAKEN standards. At the receiving telecom network, before passing a call to the receiver, the carrier will check the caller ID and the identifier of the calling party based on STIR / SHAKEN standards to authenticate whether a call is genuine or spoofed. Once the caller ID is authenticated with the identifier, the call will be routed to the receiving party.

STIR is an acronym for Secure Telephone Identity Revisited. SHAKEN is an acronym for Signature-based Handling of Asserted Information Using tokens standards.

Why should you care?

There are multiple reasons you should care about STIR / SHAKEN. Some of the major reasons are listed below:

  • FCC (Federal Communications Commission) has made it mandatory for VoIP businesses to use STIR / SHAKEN. This is the law enforced in the USA and that is why it is necessary to care about it if you are targeting or serving USA-based customers.
  • To deliver better and secure customer services to keep customers happy, keeping your VoIP network secure and protected is necessary.
  • To save your business from legal or brand troubles, securing your VoIP network from call spoofing is necessary.

All this makes it mandatory for VoIP businesses to care about STIR / SHAKEN.

If you have any questions or need any help with STIR / SHAKEN, contact us.

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