SINGAPORE: A registry meant to combat SMS spoofing has been shut down and replaced by a full-fledged system in response to the recent spate of SMS phishing scams, said the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) on Monday (Mar 7).
The SMS SenderID Protection Registry, which was initially piloted in August 2021 by IMDA and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), was done in collaboration with the UK Mobile Ecosystem Forum (MEF) as a commercial service provider.
"MEF had informed that IMDA’s requirements to meet Singapore’s needs going forward are not consistent with its business model," said IMDA, in response to CNA's queries.
"As IMDA will be moving towards a more fully-fledged SSIR, the MEF and IMDA have therefore jointly decided to conclude our pilot which has provided us with useful inputs to move on with our new model."
It added that the recent spate of SMS phishing scams in Singapore warranted a "strong response".
The authority said the "full-fledged" Singapore SMS Sender ID Registry (SSIR) can identify spoofed messages using protected SMS sender IDs, and block these messages upfront.
"This more proactive stance to better protect consumers is a regulatory requirement going forward.
"MAS and the Association of Banks in Singapore (ABS) are fully supportive of SSIR which will provide Singapore with greater control and flexibility in developing regulatory measures that better protect consumers in Singapore."
The Singapore Network Information Centre (SGNIC), a subsidiary of IMDA, has been appointed by the authority to operate the SSIR.
SGNIC is the national registry responsible for the regulation, administration and management of Singapore’s Internet Domain Name System infrastructure.
"SSIR has already begun the process of onboarding organisations, in particular banks, government agencies and other interested organisations," said IMDA.
"Once fully onboarded, organisations will have their registered SMS sender IDs protected."