OBR’s grip on Europe almost complete, as Finland, Cyprus and Luxembourg go live with Origin-Based Rating

Finland, Cyprus and Luxembourg are the latest countries to join the trend for Origin Based Rating (OBR), gaining regulatory approval for operators to impose differential termination rates according to where an incoming call has originated.

Finland, Cyprus and Luxembourg are the latest countries to join the trend for Origin Based Rating (OBR), gaining regulatory approval for operators to impose differential termination rates according to where an incoming call has originated.

The practise, first observed in 2013, has dramatically altered the landscape for interconnect billing in Europe and beyond, requiring billing systems such as iCONX to rate on both #A and #BNumber in order to maintain fully accurate invoicing, settlement and routing operations.

Earlier in 2017, Belgium and Netherlands also went live with particularly complex OBR charging regimes. In the case of Belgium, this was an additional development following OBR go-live for fixed numbers in April 2016. In both Belgium and Netherlands, all of the origin countries were included in a single “big bang” implementation whereby, as previously observed in Switzerland, rather than having a 2-way “EU” and “non-EU” price or grouping of countries, each individual calling country comes with its own specific rate.

Initially observed in the form of manually-communicated “Anumber surcharges”, OBR has since grown to a hugely complex matrix of differential charging possibilities, with country and even operator-specific features intensifying the challenge. iCONX combines an “any-to-any” granularity for #A and #B interactions with intelligent grouping options that successfully streamline and reduce workload for the system users.

OBR has also triggered fraudulent and abusive use cases based on the deliberate manipulation of CLI for commercial gain. iCONX anti-fraud tools allow for the successful trapping of blank, invalid and manipulated CLIs, combined with a range of system actions in response to either block such traffic in the future or apply further differential charging.

Speaking for iCONX, Head of Sales & Marketing Gavin Stewart commented : “OBR’s grip across Europe is almost complete. Telcos need to ensure their interconnect billing & routing processes are fully up to date for OBR compliance, or they risk missing out on significant revenue uplifts just from BAU OBR charging”.

“In addition, the fraud threat from CLI Errors is significant – but even before considering that, a ‘business as usual’ scenario exists for telcos to ensure they aren’t missing out on legitimate revenues”.

Throughout 2017 iCONX has been conducting a detailed technical analysis of the OBR rates market, aimed at identifying the positive finance impacts for telcos in embracing OBR, versus the threats and risks posed by non-compliance. It expects to release its findings in early 2018.

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