Toll Free Verification Requirements

Notice

US carriers have announced that all Toll-Free numbers running traffic on your account must be verified by September 30, 2022.  All businesses must verify their toll-free phone number(s) by completing this form.  

 

What is Toll-Free Verification?

The toll-free verification process is free of charge. It pre-qualifies messaging traffic as 'verified' with our downstream peers, which helps to increase message deliverability on the toll-free number.

Verification is not whitelisting, so approval doesn’t guarantee that you won’t experience any blocking. However, as long as the sent messages align with what's stated on the approved verification application, we can work with our peers more swiftly and ask for a block to be removed.

 

How do I submit a toll-free verification form? 

Click here to submit your toll-free verification form. 

 

What are the differences between Verified, Pending, and Restricted numbers?

The Toll-free Aggregator has created 3 Classes of Service to classify verification status: Verified, Pending Verification, and Restricted.

  • Verified: Verified numbers have gone through the toll-free verification process and were approved. Their traffic is subjected to limited filters. If traffic does trigger any filters that specific content will be blocked but the number will not be automatically blocked.
  • Pending Verification: Pending Verification numbers have submitted a toll-free verification application, and are currently awaiting a response from the aggregator. They can send at a lower throughput than verified numbers, but higher than restricted numbers. Blocking can be applied to individual content or there can be an automatic block of all traffic from the number. These numbers will remain in this pending state until a decision has been made on verification status.
  • Restricted (aka Unverified): Restricted numbers have either 1) not submitted a verification request or 2) have had their application denied. These numbers are subject to the highest amount of filtering, and numbers in this state will automatically get shut off if any spam or unwanted traffic is detected. 
    • Daily Limit: 2,000 messages per day
    • Weekly Limit: 12,000 messages per week
    • Monthly Limit: 25,000 messages per month.

Note:

Toll-Free numbers sending traffic to Canadian destinations will need to have their traffic verified or in a pending status or the traffic will be blocked. The above limits do not apply to unverified Canadian traffic.

 

What does it cost? 

The toll-free verification process is free of charge. 

 

What are the minimum requirements to get verified?

  • One or more toll-free numbers
  • Verification form completed
  • The use case is not listed on our Ineligible Use Case list
  • A documented/detailed opt-in process (a screenshot and/or URL is required for marketing use cases).  See below for examples. 
  • Sakari Terms of Service and Carrier Best Practices (CTIA guidelines) are being followed

 

How long does it take to be approved?

As of late September 2022, once the Sakari team receives your form, it will be submitted within 1-2 business days. Upon submission, carriers are currently processing requests in 4-5 weeks

 

What other options do I have?

If you prefer to message from a United States Local phone number (e.g. 415, 206, 919), we can set that up on your account.  Please note that businesses messaging on local phone numbers have a separate registration process called 10DLC that must be completed.  10DLC registrations typically are approved in 1 business day.

 

Ineligible Use Cases

High-Risk Financial Services Get Rich Quick Schemes Debt Forgiveness Illegal Substances/ Activities General

Payday loans

Short-term, high-interest loans

Auto loans

Mortgage loans

Student loans

Gambling

Sweepstakes

Stock alerts

Cryptocurrency

Debt consolidation

Debt reduction

Credit repair programs

Deceptive work from home programs

Multi-level marketing

Work from home programs

Risk investment opportunities

Debt collection or consolidation

Cannabis

Alcohol

Tobacco or vape

Phishing

Fraud or scams

Deceptive marketing

Pornography

Profanity or hate speech

 

Submitting the Toll-Free Verification Form

Opt-in

  • Make sure the opt-in flow is thoroughly detailed.
  • Consumer consent should be collected by the direct (first) party sending the messages.
  • If Website opt-in: Screenshots of the web form where the client adds a number and agrees to receive messaging.
  • Website Posting (Support): Where is the number advertised and where does the customer find the number to text in.
  • If a keyword or QR Code Opt-in: Where does the customer find the keyword in order to opt-in to these messages? Please provide this material (photos or screenshots) for verification.
  • If Voice/IVR opt-in: In this case please provide a screenshot record of opt-in via voice in the client's database/ CRM. (i.e., a check box on their CRM saying that the customer opted in and the date)
  • 2FA/OTP: Please provide a screenshot process to receive the initial text
  • Paper form (Customer/ Employee): please upload a photo of the form

Examples of opt-in:

optin_example_1.pngoptin_example_2.png

 

Additional Information Required

  • Business Name: The business name of the Sakari customer.
  • Business Contact Email: The contact information for the compliance point of contact (POC).
  • Legal Company Name: The legal company name of the business sending the actual messages to consumers.
  • Organization Type: Use the drop-down menu to select the type of the message sender company.
  • State of Incorporation: The state where the message sender company was registered.
  • Business Address: The primary/corporate address of the message sender.
  • Campaign Description: Please describe your use case and the purpose of your messages (i.e. appointment reminders, receipts, etc.)
  • What types of messages are being sent?: Use the drop-down menu to select an option that best describes your message type:
    • Conversational: Conversational messaging is a one-to-one message exchange between a business and an end user (recipient).
      • Please provide supporting information on how opt-in is collected: Please describe how potential subscribers are opted in to receive messages.
    • Informational: These messages inform your customers of things like service updates, appointments, and scheduling. Informational messages do not sell or promote anything regarding the business.
      • Please provide supporting information on how opt-in is collected: Use the drop-down menu to select an option that best describes how subscribers opt in to the messaging program:
        • IVR: A potential subscriber provides their consent via an interactive voice response.
        • Keyword: A potential subscriber texts a keyword (i.e JOIN) to opt into a messaging program.
        • POS or other on-site location: A potential subscriber provides their consent at the point of sale or other on-site location.
        • Via paper form: A potential subscriber provides their consent at an in-person location via a paper form. 
        • Weblink/URL: A potential subscriber enters their telephone number through a website to opt into a messaging program.
        • Other: Use this field to detail any other type of opt-in not listed above.
    • Marketing: A text message sent that contains a sales or marketing promotion. 
        • Please provide supporting information on how opt-in is collected: Use the drop-down menu to select an option that best describes how subscribers opt in to the messaging program (see the list above).
  • Please provide supporting information on how opt-in is collected: Use the drop-down menu to select an option that best describes how subscribers opt in to the messaging program (see the list above). A screenshot and/or URL will be required to move forward.
  • Sample Messages: Please include 1-3 variations of the messages you intend to send.
  • Please choose the category that best represents your use case/content: Use the drop-down menu to select a category that closely resembles your use case.
  • Are you using more than one sending number?
    • No: Select this option if you're not using more than one sending number.
    • Yes: Select this option if you're using more than one sending number.
  • Estimated Monthly Message Volume: Use the drop-down menu to select a number that best represents the estimated monthly message volume.
  • Canadian Traffic: Please choose the appropriate drop-down selection if a majority of the traffic is expected to be delivered to Canadian handsets.
  • Supporting Documentation: Please attach any additional information that would be useful.
  •  

Please note, it is not necessary to include samples of every different variation on your messaging, but it is strongly recommended that your message samples are representative of the majority of the messaging you plan to send.

 

Questions? Please open a ticket with the Sakari support team.

 

Toll-Free Messaging Best Practices

Toll-Free messaging users must adhere to the following standards:

  • Obtain clear opt-in from your recipients before sending them messages (the opt-in does not need to be via text messaging)
  • Provide easy ways for your users to opt-out of messages
  • Maintain a very low opt-out (STOP reply) rate from your recipients
  • Use shortened, branded URLs for the highest deliverability levels when sending links in the message body. Do not use shared URL shorteners (such as popular free URL shortening services) as these are forbidden by US carriers and will result in filtering.  We provide a free of charge URL shortener, you can learn more about that here
  • Do not "load balance" by sending the same or similar messages using multiple Toll-Free numbers. Carriers call this "snowshoeing" and it is specifically targeted for filtering on toll-free SMS.
    • If you have a valid use case for sending the same or similar messages over multiple Toll-Free numbers, please contact Sakari support.
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