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Sanchar Saathi Initiative: Home Ministry & DoT crackdown on fake SMS

Utkarsh Classes Last Updated 29-05-2024
Sanchar Saathi Initiative: Home Ministry & DoT crackdown on fake SMS Government Scheme 4 min read

The Department of Telecommunication (DoT), in association with the Union Ministry of Home Affairs, has initiated a strong crackdown on the menace of fraudulent SMS(Short Messaging Service) under the Sanchar Saathi Initiative. Eight SMS headers that were being used by cyber criminals to target unsuspecting mobile phone owning customers have been blocked by the government.

Steps taken by the  Department of Telecommunication (DoT)

The Department of Telecommunication (DoT), which comes under the Ministry of Communication, the government of India, said that more than 10,000 fraudulent messages from eight different entities were sent in the past three months.

Dot has blocked and blacklisted the 73 SMS Headers and 1522 SMS content templates owned by these eight entities. 

No Use of Mobile numbers for Telemarketing purposes

The law does not allow the use of mobile numbers for telemarketing activities. DoT has allotted 180 and 140 as prefixes for the telemarketing purpose. The 10-digit number which is generally used by a consumer, is not allowed to be used for telemarketing purposes. If a consumer uses their telephone connection for telemarketing purposes, then their connection will be disconnected on the first complaint, and their name and address may be blacklisted for a period of two years by DoT.

The DoT has also urged the people to report such fraudulent communications at the Chakshu facility in Sanchar Saathi.

Sanchar Saathi Initiative 

The Sanchar Saathi Initiative was launched by the Union Communication Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on 16 May 2023 in New Delhi.

The Sanchar Saathi portal has been developed by the Department of Telecommunication to empower mobile subscribers, increase awareness about citizen-centric initiatives of the Government and strengthen their security.  Some of the important modules are:

Report Suspected Fraud Communications (Chakshu)

The Report Suspected Fraud Communications (Chakshu) module of Sanchar Saathi allows citizens to report suspicious calls or messages received through SMS or Whatsapp that are intended for cybercrime, financial fraud, fake lottery offers, job offers, etc. 

Centralised Equipment Identity Register (CEIR):

A mobile user whose mobile phone has been stolen or lost can log an online complaint on the Centralised Equipment Identity Register (CEIR) module. The mobile owner has to report his lost/stolen mobile 15-digit IMEI(International Mobile Equipment Identity) on the CEIR. After verification, the system blocks the stolen mobile phones from being used in Indian networks.

ASTR (Artificial Intelligence and Facial Recognition powered Solution for Telecom SIM Subscriber Verification)

Many mobile connections are obtained using forged documents. The connections are used to commit crimes and anti-national activities. To check this menace, an artificial intelligence (AI)- based tool, ASTR, has been developed that identifies SIMs obtained through forged documents.


Answer: The Department of Telecommunication, under the Union Ministry of Telecommunication.

Answer: Union Communication Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on 16 May 2023 in New Delhi.

Answer: It is also known as Report Suspected Fraud Communications. Customers can report fraud calls or SMS received on their mobile phones.

Answer: 15 digits, which are alphanumeric and unique to every mobile phone.
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