WTA Files Comments in Robocalls/TRACED Act Proceeding

On May 15, WTA filed Comments in response to the Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking adopted by the Commission on March 31, which implements the TRACED Act and mandates STIR/SHAKEN on IP portions of a carrier’s network. WTA advised the Commission that interconnection remains a serious barrier for RLECs wishing to adopt the STIR/SHAKEN solution and that in order to advance IP voice telephony in rural America, the Commission should set “rules of the road” that preserve existing meet points for interconnection and protect RLECs from having to interconnect at distant locations.

WTA also supported an extended implementation period for RLECs to implement STIR/SHAKEN on the IP portions of their network that will allow additional time for them to choose and test vendor solutions and will hopefully allow time for larger carriers to make upgrades at interconnection points. Further, considering the cost of transitioning to full STIR/SHAKEN as well as the amount of TDM that remains in our nation’s telephony network, WTA recommended to the Commission that it should encourage the research and deployment of alternative call authentication methodologies, including out-of-band STIR, which has already begun to be deployed in some rural networks as a bridge to STIR/SHAKEN.