In order to avoid misuse of telephone numbers for fraudulent telemarketing, the South Korean Ministry of Government Legislation recently announced an amendment to the Telecommunications Business Act. The amendment, which is reported to come into force on April 16, will require businesses that send web-based bulk text messages to register with the Ministry of Science, ICT (Information and Communications Technologies) and Future Planning (Ministry of Science). Companies will also be expected to overcome spoofing by putting in place certain technical safeguards. The aim of these new measures is to prevent the use of fake caller ID numbers and falsified information, and to protect network security.

Specifically, telecommunications carriers will have to secure their systems against fraudulent manipulation of caller ID numbers and to block any number that they discover has been used illegally or misleadingly. From a government regulatory perspective, the amendment also now expressly enables the Ministry of Science to order operators to stop servicing telephone numbers found to have been used for fraudulent activities or illegal gains.

TIP: Businesses with operations in South Korea should check whether they are covered under this law and need to register. They should also ensure that they have adequate anti-spoofing safeguards in place.