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The Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA) announced that every company or establishment registered in the UAE has automatically become part of the Kashif initiative, which means showing the name and number of the calling party to the call recipient. This enables the call recipient to recognize the calling party and allows them to decide whether or not to respond. TDRA has launched this initiative gradually, starting from mid-2021, in cooperation with the service providers, as part of enhancing customer satisfaction and happiness with telecommunications services in the UAE, and it is expected to have an impact in the future by reducing unwanted calls.

TDRA indicated that it had enacted the regulations and executive procedures related to this feature, which comes as part of the development system aimed at enhancing the trust of customers in the telecom sector in general and in calls received from a number of private sector companies in particular, and to reduce the dissatisfaction of telecom subscribers with anonymous calls. Today, the customer can identify the name of the calling party, whether the call is from a mobile or fixed number.

TDRA confirmed that the launch of this feature came after reviewing the best international practices and standards, holding consultations with service providers about the initiative, identifying the necessary regulatory tools and making the necessary adjustments to the networks of service providers to activate the feature, in addition to conducting technical checks on mobile phones in coordination with manufacturers to ensure complete readiness.

Commenting on this initiative, Eng. Saif Bin Ghelaita, director of Technology Development Affairs at TDRA, said: “We all receive calls, often from unknown numbers or not registered in the recipient's phone. 'Kashif' reveals the name of the calling party to the recipient along with its number. This initiative is part of TDRA’s efforts to support the interests of the stakeholders, primarily the customers who will be able, thanks to this feature, to know the name of the calling party and thus decide to answer the call or not. We are confident that this initiative will contribute to enhancing the happiness of telecom customers in the UAE, and we thank the service providers for their cooperation in this context.”

Bin Ghelaita added: “The 'Kashif' feature is unprecedented in the region. It is activated automatically for all calls, and it embodies best practices aimed at providing high-end communication services, taking into account the customers’ needs. We, at TDRA, will continue to implement an ambitious strategy to enhance services in this vital sector, which will reflect on the happiness of society, in implementation of the Government’s directives in this regard.”

Initially, TDRA applied this feature to the numbers of the banking sector, with plans to expand into other sectors, including health, hospitality and education. This feature was applied to all numbers of private sector companies in 2022, and it includes fixed and mobile numbers registered in the name of private sector companies.

TDRA confirmed that “Kashif” is considered the first line of the caller’s identification; however, with the presence of this feature, customers must adhere to the directives of the authorities related to not disclosing personal information such as account numbers, password numbers and identification words, to name a few.

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