Unauthorized Port-Out Best Practices


Anna Kafka


An unauthorized port is also known as a “slam.” Slamming occurs when a number is ported out to a new carrier without proper authorization from the End User. FCC rules, guidelines, and policies establish that it is the new carrier’s responsibility to ensure that the port requests it submits are in fact authorized. In order to encourage competition and freedom of choice by End Users, applicable rules and procedures limit the ability of the old or “losing” carrier to verify that port out requests are properly authorized. Therefore, in order to support successful porting, Bandwidth requires its customers to obtain legally valid authorization from End Users as part of each port request it makes. Legally valid authorization is captured through the execution of an LOA that contains at least the minimum required information according to the FCC’s rules and industry standards.

Bandwidth can provide port-out notifications so that customers are able to review and validate telephone numbers that have been ported out by End Users. If a customer believes a number has ported without valid authorization, the Bandwidth LNP team works with the other carrier to make a determination of the validity of the request and, if the port was not authorized, return the number as quickly as possible.  The following process is required in order for the LNP team to process a “snapback” of a number that has been ported without authorization. Please note, it is critical to report these types of incidents within 24 hours of the porting activity:

  1. Report the potential unauthorized port to the LNP team by opening a ticket
  2. Attach an LOA if needed. An LOA signed by the end user of record, identifying the end user’s choice of carrier may be requested. This should be attached to the ticket if so.
  3. Call the LNP team promptly at 855-VoIP-Pro (855-864-7776) to advise a number was potentially ported away without valid authorization and that a ticket has been opened.  

The LNP team will immediately begin to work with the other carrier in an attempt to return the number if the port was not properly requested. This may require further cooperation or input from the customer or end user. 

IMPORTANT:  Any unauthorized ports shall be reported to Bandwidth within 24-hours of the occurrence, but no more than one week after the occurrence. Any unauthorized port request brought to Bandwidth’s attention more than one week after the day it ported away is considered a ‘winback’, to which standard porting timeframes and policies apply. An unauthorized port request that is older than one week will not be worked as a ‘slam’.

Things to keep in mind with unauthorized ports: 

  • Numbers are authorized based on the new or “winning” carrier’s criteria of validation.
  • An unpaid bill by an End User does not constitute an invalid port. In fact, the FCC has made clear that carriers cannot delay or prevent porting due to a billing dispute or unpaid accounts.
  • Despite validation efforts taken by carriers, mistaken or unauthorized porting may still occur.  If there is a belief that a number was intentionally slammed, End Users may report such claims directly to the FCC via their website at http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/slamming or http://www.fcc.gov/complaints.

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