WCB Reevaluates STIR/SHAKEN Undue Hardship Extensions

On December 16, 2021, the Wireline Competition Bureau (“WCB”) released a Public Notice reevaluating the STIR/SHAKEN implementation extensions as required by the TRACED Act.. The Commission has granted three categorical extensions of the STIR/SHAKEN mandate based on undue hardship: (1) for small voice service providers who have 100,000 or fewer voice subscriber lines; (2) for voice service providers who were unable to obtain a Service Provider Code (“SPC”) token necessary to participate in STIR/SHAKEN; and (3) for services scheduled for section 214 discontinuance as of June 30, 2021.  The WCB has reevaluated each extension as follows:

  • Small Voice Service Provider Extension: the WCB declined to lengthen the extension for small voice service providers beyond the June 30, 2023 deadline.  The WCB concluded that the public interest of granting an additional extension was greatly outweighed by the public benefit of deterring illegal calls, and that the two year extension was granted in part to allow these providers time to accommodate additional burdens they may have in implementation.
  • Voice Service Providers that Cannot Obtain a SPC Token:  the WCB found that this extension remains necessary, and did not revise or further lengthen the extension.   The WCB concluded that a voice service provider cannot comply with the STIR/SHAKEN rules if it is unable to receive a token, and though the Governance Authority has modified its policy that was prohibiting many providers from receiving a token, the extension remains necessary to ensure no providers is subject to an obligation it cannot fulfill.
  • Services Scheduled for Section 214 Discontinuance: the WCB found this extension remains necessary, and did not revise or lengthen the extension.   The WCB concluded it would be burdensome to require voice service providers to implement STIR/SHAKEN on network technology they intend to discontinue and that these resources were better spent upgrading networks that have the potential to benefit from STIR/SHAKEN.  Service providers must actually discontinue service subject to a discontinuance application by June 30, 2022, otherwise they must implement STIR/SHAKEN.

For additional information please see previous blog post FCC Seeks Comment on STIR/SHAKEN Undue Hardship Extensions

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