With this initiative, Claro, TIM, and Vivo will open their networks to developers worldwide, enabling the creation of safer digital services.
28 November 2023, São Paulo: A leader in 5G and digital innovation in Latin America, today Brazil adds another milestone to its trailblazing profile. As part of the global GSMA Open Gateway initiative, mobile operators Claro, TIM and Vivo have announced the launch of three network API (Application Programmable Interfaces) services focused on improving digital security: Number Verify, SIM Swap and Device Location. The announcement, the first one in the region supported by multiple operators, was made today during an event hosted by the GSMA in São Paulo.
Launched earlier this year at MWC Barcelona, the GSMA Open Gateway initiative represents a paradigm shift in the way the global telecoms industry designs and brings to market new mobile apps, immersive and digital services. It will also help the mobile industry, enterprises and developers deliver better digital experiences over 5G networks for the benefit of customers, society and the economy.
GSMA Open Gateway is a common and open framework between operators to make it easier for developers and cloud providers to build safer apps and services that seamlessly communicate with each other and work for all devices and customers. This is done through single access points to mobile networks known as APIs. From Brazil to China, Norway to New Zealand, nearly 40 mobile operator groups worldwide, representing 228 mobile networks and 64% of global connections are already part of the initiative.
The APIs introduced today by Brazilian operators, the first of an evolutionary roadmap, are focused on combating digital fraud, for mobile commerce and financial institutions. The project is 100% privacy by design. The three APIs are:
- Number Verify: It offers seamless verification of a user’s mobile number by providing the next generation of strong authentication and user experience. It is a simple evolution path for any business that uses mobile numbers and SMS One-Time-Passwords. Instead of relying on SMS, Number Verify can be seamlessly and automatically activated to verify a user’s identity. This not only enhances the user experience but also eliminates potential issues, such as users not receiving an SMS or facing difficulties due to limited familiarity with technology.
- SIM Swap: Is used to check whether a given phone number has recently changed SIM cards. This helps prevent account takeover attacks, in which fraudsters take control of the account owner’s SIM card using social engineering techniques and stolen personal data. For example, at the time of a financial transaction, a financial institution can check whether the relationship between the customer’s phone number and SIM Card has been recently changed, helping them decide whether to approve the transaction or not.
- Device Location: Allows organisations to confirm whether a certain device is in a certain location, which can help spot and prevent fake transactions. This can help to protect customers against fraudsters using GPS manipulation, known as fake GPS. The API ensures instant validation of the location area provided by the mobile device owner to a service and the approximate location area of the device on the operator’s network, to prevent manipulation. For example, Delivery App companies can deploy this technology to ensure drivers and riders are delivering to the correct customer.
The mobile industry expects this to accelerate the growth of digital services and apps, by ensuring they integrate seamlessly with national mobile networks, as well as hundreds of others around the world. As part of the GSMA Open Gateway initiative, these APIs will be locally and globally federated, meaning that as well as Brazil’s 145 million mobile customers, developers can also reach new customers outside of Brazil as the initiative grows.
Carlos Araujo, New Business Director at Claro, said: “Claro is driving the innovative Open Gateway initiative. This tool stands out as an essential instrument for the digital revolution, with a special emphasis on its potential in identity validation and fraud prevention. By anticipating the demands of the ever-evolving market, Claro is committed to leading the way to secure technological solutions. We are excited about the positive impact that this initiative will have on global technological advancement.”
Renato Ciuchini, VP for New Business and Innovation at TIM Brasil, said: “TIM is committed to the Brazilian Market to offer the best security and fraud-fighting solutions. We want to create an increasingly safer and more protected environment, benefiting the whole society. The opportunity to be part of the Open Gateway is precisely in line with this scenario. Together with GSMA, TIM is charting a safer, brighter path forward for everyone.”
Debora Bortolasi, B2B Executive Director at Vivo, said: “The Open Gateway initiative is a milestone in the transformation of the telecommunications sector, with a positive impact on the security of several industries in the market, as it enables the conversion of communications networks into programmable digital platforms through global and standardized APIs, benefiting a large digital ecosystem from startups to large companies.”
Mats Granryd, Director General of the GSMA, said: “Through the GSMA Open Gateway initiative, Brazil’s mobile operators are leading the way, helping enterprise developers and cloud providers launch new services to tackle fraud and improve digital security. By taking this approach we can ensure new digital services not only work seamlessly across all of Brazil’s mobile networks, but also hundreds of others around the world. Next year we will see more and more Brazilians benefit from the launch of these APIs, making them feel more at ease knowing their mobile services are more secure.”
For these first set of APIs, local operators collaborated with strategic partners Infobip as technical integrator and Microsoft Azure as services platform provider.
Mijo Soldin, Vice President of Telecom Strategy at Infobip, said: “This collaboration demonstrates Infobip’s global market leading CPaaS position, our strong developer relations alongside our history of strategic telco collaborations. All are essential to increase the potential for a successful collaboration and faster time to revenue. The launch of the CAMARA-compliant API in Brazil marks an important step for Infobip, helping to democratize the messaging ecosystem globally, hand in hand with telcos. As an innovative company and GSMA Open Gateway channel partner, we will continue to build and offer additional CAMARA-compliant APIs, working closely with our telco partners to expose customer experience-friendly APIs to developers.”
Ross Ortega, Vice President, Program Management, Microsoft, said: “Microsoft is proud to continue building a strong relationship with GSMA Open Gateway, embracing a future where Modern Connected Applications and advanced networks seamlessly converge. Our commitment to standardization simplifies the software developer experience. Developers can take full advantage of the network without the need to customize their applications for a given network or themselves to become networking experts. We’re committed to working with GSMA Open Gateway and operators to expose networking capabilities enabling a new generation of applications.”
GSMA Open Gateway APIs are defined, developed and published in CAMARA, the open-source project for developers to access enhanced network capabilities, driven by the Linux Foundation in collaboration with the GSMA. All three APIs presented by Brazilian operators are expected to be individually commercially available by the end of 2023. The GSMA Open Gateway ecosystem in Brazil is set for significant enhancement in 2024, with new partners NTT Data and Vonage, a part of Ericsson, joining the initiative.