The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has asked telcos to report lists of permanently disconnected mobile numbers to the regulator. Called as Mobile Number Revocation List (MNRL), the digitally-signed list of permanently disconnected mobile numbers will be published on TRAI’s website every month, allowing various agencies to independently download and easily clean up their database using their own workflows.

The move will help companies such as banks, insurance companies, etc., which use mobile numbers for identification and authentication to keep their systems updated. This will also prevent service delivery platforms from using disconnected numbers for any authentication purpose, say through one time password.

TRAI has stated “And whereas a mobile number, when surrendered or permanently disconnected, after a certain time period gets re-allocated to some other customer, but many service delivery platforms/ systems are not updated by the earlier customer, who may either not be using the service regularly and hence do not find a reason to update his mobile number, or due to lack of awareness of potential danger due to mobile number reuse, thus creating huge potential of an identity/profile take over on re-allocation of a mobile number,”.

Currently, there is no platform/system available by which banks and other stakeholders can get the information about permanently disconnected numbers and deregister them.

“Therefore, in order to make available the Mobile Number Revocation List (MNRL) to the stakeholders for transparency and efficiency and to enable the interested parties to clean up their databases thereby not sending one time password etc. to someone other than their customer.” Trai added.

TRAI will devise an automated process requiring no manual intervention, wherein a link would be provided, where telecom service providers shall upload the latest MNRL on a monthly basis and banks and other stakeholders may download the same in a convenient way.