Robocalls are super annoying, but there are technologies out there that can help fight them, and AT&T and Comcast have announced that they've taken a major step in that effort.
AT&T and Comcast have completed what they say is the first authenticated calls between two separate voice networks. The calls took place on March 5th using AT&T and Comcast's home phone services, and the calls were authenticated using the SHAKEN and STIR protocols. AT&T and Comcast expect to begin rolling out authentication on calls between networks later this year.
The SHAKEN and STIR technologies let a person know that an incoming call is actually coming from the number listed on the caller ID. Call spoofing is a major issue in which a scammer can hijack a phone number to match the area code and three-digit prefix of the person they're calling to make their call look authentic. With SHAKEN and STIR, a spoofed call will fail verification and will not be marked as authentic, letting you know that it's a robocall.
Over the coming months, service providers will conduct tests with each others' systems to verify that their SHAKEN and STIR implementations are compatible.
T-Mobile began rolling out support for SHAKEN and STIR to select Android phones earlier this year, and so it's great to hear that other phone companies are also hard at work on rolling out these protocols. Each wireless carrier has its own systems for helping you to avoid robocalls and scammers, but SHAKEN and STIR help to make robocall fighting better, and so hopefully we see the protocols rolled out soon and working across networks.