Canadian regulator postpones STIR/SHAKEN deadline

The CRTC has postponed the STIR/SHAKEN deadline in Canada. They issued a decision on 6 April 2021 in response to interventions filed by Canadian Telephone Service Providers (TSPs) and industry associations. Here’s an overview of their decision.

Previous decisions

The CRTC has previously mandated that Canadian TSPs must use STIR/SHAKEN with IP-based calls:

  • CRTC 2018-32, issued 25 Jan 2018, was the initial requirement, with a deadline of 31 Mar 2019.
  • CRTC 2019-402, issued 9 Dec 2019, pushed the deadline to 30 Sep 2020.
  • CRTC 2019-403, also issued 9 Dec 2019, established the Canadian Secure Token Governance Authority (CSTGA).
  • CRTC 2019-402-2, issued 15 Sep 2020, pushed the deadline back to 30 Jun 2020.

The new decision

In this decision, CRTC 2021-123, the CRTC addressed the following issues raised in the intervention filings:

Should the implementation of STIR/SHAKEN be imposed as a condition of offering and providing telecommunications services?
The CRTC said yes, TSPs must implement STIR/SHAKEN in their IP-based networks as a condition of providing service. The benefits of providing call authentication to reduce the harm caused by nuisance calls outweighs the implementation burden.
If STIR/SHAKEN implementation is required, when should the requirement become effective?
The CRTC said some technical and policy issues have yet to be resolved. Therefore, they pushed back the following deadlines:
  • TSPs are required to submit an Implementation Readiness Assessment Report by 31 Aug 2021.
  • TSPs must implement STIR/SHAKEN by 30 Nov 2021.
TSPs must have access to numbering resources to receive a certificate to sign SHAKEN calls. Other TSPs, such as resellers, would be at a commercial disadvantage because their calls would be signed at a lower level of attestation. The CRTC was asked to address this issue.
The CRTC said that a Part 1 application was filed on 21 Dec 2020 requesting the CRTC to instruct the CSTGA to allow all TSPs to receive certificates. The CRTC will address the certificate access issue in response to this application.

Implementation Readiness Assessment Report

In an appendix to their decision, the CRTC provided additional information about the Implementation Readiness Assessment Report, which is due 31 Aug 2021. A list of requirements is included in this expandable view:

  • Implementation Readiness Assessment Report requirements

    The report must include the following information:

    • statistics identifying
      • the percentage of authentication/verification-enabled trunks used for IP voice traffic in relation to the total number of voice trunks,
      • the percentage by month of the number of authenticated/verified voice calls in relation to the total number of voice calls, and
      • tracking by level of authentication (e.g. trusted, partial trust, no trust) for calls delivered to customers;
    • the status and result of TSPs’ STIR/SHAKEN implementation readiness, specifically
      • whether the STIR/SHAKEN authentication uses an analytic engine or whether the Verstat parameter is sent to the end-user;
      • a brief description of the TSP’s IP voice network capacity to
        • perform complete intra-network STIR/SHAKEN-compliant calls,
        • authenticate and transmit the authentication information to the next TSP in the call path when originating a call,
        • receive and verify the caller ID information when terminating a call, send the Verstat parameter to wireless and landline end-users when an analytic engine is not used,
        • transmit the STIR/SHAKEN information when transiting a call received on an IP interconnection from an upstream TSP and sent on an IP interconnection to a downstream TSP,
        • authenticate unsigned calls received from an upstream TSP that either terminate on the TSP’s IP network or are sent to a downstream TSP through an IP interconnection,
        • handle diverted calls,
        • handle toll-free calls,
        • handle emergency calls, and
        • handle legitimate spoofed calls;
      • a brief description of the status of the TSP’s IP interconnection with other TSPs, including network-to-network interface and user-to-network interface interconnections;
      • a brief description of the solution adopted to handle enterprise clients; and the status and results of equipment testing and participation in those tests;
    • information regarding the state of the standards, specifically:
      • the status of authentication/verification standards and their subordinate standards, as well as any other related standards; and
      • identification of Canadian-specific requirements and the efforts that are being made to incorporate these requirements into the appropriate standards.
calendar for 2021

Ongoing status reports

TSPs must also provide a status report every six months on their continuing efforts to deploy STIR/SHAKEN.

  • The May reports are due May 31. Each report covers the period from the first day of September to the last day of February.
  • The November reports are due November 30. Each report covers the period from the first day of March to the last day of August.

TransNexus solutions

We offer STIR/SHAKEN solutions in our ClearIP and NexOSS software platforms. We can make your STIR/SHAKEN deployment a smooth process.

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