For a while now the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has been trying to solve the problem of SMS/call spam. Last year it came out with new guidelines for telemarketers in the hope to curb SMS spam, but that didn't work out very well. This was because promotional SMSes were now being routed through the servers located at international destinations and was still getting delivered to customers registered in National Customer Preference Register (to know more on NCPR read here)
According to TRAI, "It was observed that generally such SMSes were getting originated from locations within Germany, Sweden, Nauru, Fiji, Cambodia, Bosnia, Albania, Grenada, UK, Jersey, Sint Maarten, Tonga, Vanuatu, Namibia, Panama, Antigua and Barbuda etc. These SMSes contain the headers which are alphanumeric or starting with +91 or numbers with international codes."
So this time around TRAI has issued a direction to all telecom operators for blocking the bulk international SMS. It has had discussions with telemarketers, access service providers and International Long Distance (ILD) operators and has given them thirty days to implement the new directions that are-
All international SMS containing alphabet header or alphanumeric header or +91 as originating country code should not be delivered through the network.
If any source or number from outside the country generates more than two hundred SMS per hour with similar 'signature', the same should not be delivered through the network. However, such restriction shall not be applicable on blackout days.
Only valid codes associated with the network of those entities with whom agreements have been signed by the Access Providers shall be allowed in the network.
Let us hope unlike the previous attempts where spammers found innovative ways to bypass TRAI's guidelines, this attempt bears fruit. If not, you always have other ways in which you can minimise spam SMSes/Calls, to know more read here.