IMDA: SG brands and merchants using SMS communication will need to join SMS Sender ID Registry

IMDA: SG brands and merchants using SMS communication will need to join SMS Sender ID Registry

share on


Brands and merchants using SMS sender IDs will soon need to join the SMS Sender ID Registry (SSIR) under a new proposal by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA). The proposal was created to fight the rising scams in the market and “safeguard SMS as a communications channel”, said IMDA in a release.

With a transition period starting in October, registrations would be required by the end of the year. The pilot programme was setup last year, and IMDA set up the SSIR in March in a bid to deal with SMS-related scams. IMDA said that since its launch, over 120 public and private sector organisations have joined the SSIR and compared to the three month before, the number of SMS scam cases reported has since declined threefold

IMDA has been working with the Singapore Police Force, Government agencies and private sector partners on this front. It has also been working with mobile network operators on anti-scam SMS filtering solutions. “Technology has made it possible to identify and filter potential scam messages, upstream within the telecoms network, using machine reading technology,” IMDA said.

As a start, the proposed solutions can detect malicious links within the SMS that lead to scam websites; and telcos can then develop solutions to identify patterns of suspicious scam messages and filter them accordingly,” it added.  IMDA reiterated that the proposed measures are part of an ongoing multi-layered approach to strengthen protection against scams:

1. Blocking scam SMS and malicious URLs/Scam websites once notified

-Since 2019, telcos block scam SMS that came through networks

-The malicious URLs embedded within a scam SMS are also blocked once notifie


- Since 2021, SMS aggregators block upfront scam messages using spoof IDs

3. Going forward, IMDA is also exploring providing consumers with the option not to receive international SMS

4. Block known/specific spoof call numbers

- Since 2019, commonly spoofed local numbers, (typically numbers impersonating local government agencies and emergency services e.g. 995) have been blocked

5. Filtering and flagging overseas calls

- Since 2020, robocalls (automated scam calls) were blocked using pattern recognition technology

- Overseas calls were labelled with a “+” sign to alert the public to be vigilant

6. Block spoofed fixed-line and mobile numbers coming from overseas

-This is done in-network as a default, without affecting users. This will be completed by year-end

7. Going forward, exploring providing consumers the option not to receive international calls

Nonetheless, it asked for the public to remain vigilant. “The best defence is a discerning public, where all consumers are individually alert and raise collective awareness by sharing scam prevention tips with friends and family.”

Related articles:
Study: Brand trust dips with fraudsters impersonation scam texts and calls
MAS imposes SG$330m additional capital on OCBC for deficiencies in SMS scams
#MarketingExcellenceAwards SG 2021 highlights: Singtel wins back brand trust with humour-led anti-scam ad campaign

share on

Follow us on our Telegram channel for the latest updates in the marketing and advertising scene.

Free newsletter

Get the daily lowdown on Asia's top marketing stories.

We break down the big and messy topics of the day so you're updated on the most important developments in Asia's marketing development – for free.

subscribe now open in new window