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Pai Plans March Vote on June 2021 STIR/SHAKEN Deadline

FCC chair Ajit Pai Friday said he is scheduled a vote at the March 31 meeting on a proposal to mandate the STIR/SHAKEN (the FCC used to call it SHAKEN/STIR) caller authentication regime, which is a way to allow for default blocking of robocalls. The proposal would give carriers, including cable ops delivering IP phone service, until June 30, 2021 to comply. 

The FCC is under a congressional mandate to require STIR/SHAKEN, which it had initially said was voluntary, but with the expectation that all carriers would volunteer.  

Related: Broadband Associations Push for Robocall Safe Harbor 

"In December 2019, Congress passed and the President signed into law the TRACED Act, which directs the Commission to require voice service providers to implement STIR/SHAKEN in their networks within 18 months of the law’s enactment," Pai's office pointed out in announcing the upcoming vote. 

Related: Pai Warns of SHAKEN/STIR Mandate 

"Last year, I demanded that major phone companies voluntarily deploy STIR/SHAKEN, and a number of them did," said the chairman. "But it’s clear that FCC action is needed to spur across-the-board deployment of this important technology. There is no silver bullet when it comes to eradicating robocalls, but this is a critical shot at the target.” 

The item also includes a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on whether to give smaller carriers one-year extensions per the TRACED Act, which among other things requires such caller authentication to be provided fee to customers, something the FCC also anticipated but did not mandate in allowing such default robocall blocking by carriers. 

John Eggerton
John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.