streamWrite / ATI Blog

News, events and useful information

SMS 10DLC update

Back in March, I posted an article about 10DLC, the new registration mandate for SMS messaging. (see: 10 DLC and short codes: controlling the megaphone).

 In that post, I explored the different options that a business has to reach customers and prospective customers via text, or “SMS” in an A2P (application to phone) manner. Short codes, long codes and TFN (Toll Free Number) services were discussed in the post and the differences were highlighted. The overall theme was that the mobile phone carriers want to know more about WHO is sending WHAT kind bulk messaging to their subscribers. It’s a good thing; I mean, who really wants texts about their auto warranty expiration every day?

 In response to SMS abuse, 10DLC was created as an alternative to the largely unsupervised ‘Long Codes’ (a Long Code is just a standard local text telephone number … like 212.234.1233). Prior to 10DLC, you could obtain these Long Code numbers cheaply, obtain many of them, and blast away. 10DLC changes all of this. And if you’re in possession of some Long Codes, now’s the time to get them registered for 10DLC.

 Although deadlines to register long codes for 10DLC have pushed several times during the pandemic, a hard date of September 30, 2021 has been established for all long codes to be transferred. The good news, is that registering a long code can decrease carrier filtering by up to 90% (providing you remain in good standing, and you’re sending compliant messages that customers want). Missing the deadline could mean heavy filtering by carriers, increased per-message fees and message delivery failures.

 

To register for 10DLC, you need to initiate the registration by providing the following information to your SMS provider:

  • Employer identification number (EIN)
  • Two contacts
  • Name
  • Email address
  • Phone number

 

In addition to the above information, there may be questions as to the ‘use case’ for a given 10DLC number (what kind of traffic, about what, to who, etc).  Once you’re registered, you can begin to enjoy largely un-filtered, prompt SMS message sends (providing you don’t try to extend everyone’s auto warranty).

 

For more information on 10DLC and the SMS A2P landscape, check out this link from Twilio about 10DLC, or feel free to contact us at info@ati-connect.com.

 

 

Court Notifications Best Practices

In a previous post, I discussed the importance and value of providing outbound court notifications.  Today we'll take a look at some best practices for sending effective outbound notifications.

Notification Content

There are multiple posts and sources, including the link below, which cite that reminding people of court dates, when combined with other messages regarding the consequences of FTA (failure to appear), is more effective than just sending date, time and location notifications. 

In addition, notifications are being customized with remote appearance instructions (number to call along with PIN, or video link information) or Covid-related instructions, such as "if you are experiencing Covid-19 symptoms or have tested positive in the last 10 days, please call the court."     

Frequency and Quantity of Messages

Depending on the type of event, consider sending multiple notifications leading up to the event date and time.  In the example of an upcoming hearing, an initial notification might be sent two weeks before the hearing date, followed by additional reminders one week, one day and two hours prior to the scheduled time.  It can also be beneficial to send notifications after events for FTA or past due payments.

Notification Methods

It can be useful to provide notifications in multiple ways, and if sending multiple notifications for a single event, it might be good to combine different types of notifications, such as post cards, emails, automated calls and text messages.  

The New York City Criminal Justice Agency has provided a comprehensive publication that shares summary data from multiple studies, and delves deeper into best practices, including data collection, messaging templates, when to send notifications, how to evaluate the success of your program and more.      

https://www.nycja.org/publications/court-date-notifications-2

 

 

Windows Server 2022 Coming Soon

I recently wrote about the upcoming Windows 11 release scheduled for later this year. Along with Windows 11, Microsoft will be releasing the next generation server operating system, Windows Server 2022. This release is now in preview for Windows Insider members.

Introducing Windows Server 2022

Security Enhancements

Several security enhancements will be included in the release such as: 

  • Secured core server includes a set of drivers for hardware and firmware along with virtualization-based security and a number of other measures affecting hardware and hypervisor related vulnerabilities and concerns
  • HTTPS and TLS 1.3 are now enabled by default, eliminating outdated cryptographic algorithms
  • Encrypted DNS keeps name resolution traffic private by using HTTPS
  • SMB AES-256 encryption enables more advanced cryptography when connecting to other computers that support the algorithms, and can be enforced with Group Policy

Azure Hybrid

Azure hybrid capabilities will allow management of servers hosted outside of Azure using tools from within Azure. A hybrid machine (with the Azure Connected Machine agent) connected to Azure becomes a connected machine within Azure, giving it a resource ID and resource group. Organizations can then use Azure Arc to simplify the management of the environment through a single pane of glass.

Windows Containers

Included are several enhancements for running Windows Containers and using Kubernetes. Among them container image size will be reduced by as much as 40% with startup time improvements of 30% and greater performance overall.

Edge Browser

Microsoft's Edge browser takes over as the default browser for Windows server, finally replacing IE once and for all.

Storage Migration

Storage migration including user and group storage, Linux server storage, etc. becomes easier with Windows enhanced Storage Migration Service.

Summary

Detail on other features and much more information is available from Microsoft on What's new in Windows Server 2022

Our team is looking forward to spinning up this latest server operating system and running validation tests on it with our Portals, self-service, application-server software.

The Value of Outbound Court Notifications

We get notifications reminding us of our many things in our daily lives, such as dentist appointments, package deliveries, or the expected arrival time of the cable TV repair technician.  There has been a dramatic increase in usage by the public sector - perhaps most notably regarding the Covid-19 vaccine. While attending the NACM (National Association of Court Management)  in mid-July, we had some interesting conversations that underscored the importance of court notifications, the focus of this post.

Courts use notifications for a variety of things, including jury service reminders, hearing reminders, payment reminders, collections notices and more. When it comes to criminal cases, nationwide, 35% of defendants fail to appear for court dates.  As a result, warrants are issued, people are detained for days weeks depending on the nature of the charges, and the court date is rescheduled.  This slows down an already backlogged system, and the cost of issuing and serving warrants and detaining people is staggering.  Courts that have implemented hearing reminders have experienced a reduction in failures to appear, and since the cost of each reminder is pennies, it is a valuable tool.  

Payment reminders are an effective way of improving cash flow.  Collections notices are also effective because most people want to avoid being sent to a collection agency and courts want to avoid this because a significant percentage of the revenue is often retained by collection agencies - as much as 25% or more.  Jury reminders are now offered by jury management system providers and IVR system providers alike, and help to improve jury yields.   

By selecting the right solution for your needs and following best practices, the impact and value of these reminders will be optimized.  We will cover this topic on a future post. 

 

 

Windows 11 -- Coming Later This Year

All good things...

It seems like a long time since its release in 2015 that Windows 10 has been the predominant desktop OS. And, it was certainly welcome relief to its predecessor, Windows 8. But as they say, all good things must come to an end, and that time is approaching for Windows 10. 

Later this year, Windows 11 will make its debut as an upgrade to supported Windows 10 systems and will begin shipping on new devices.

What's new with Windows 11? 

For starters, there will be a new taskbar and start button. The task bar will be centered rather than left justified and selection of the start button will reveal a new menu with a search dialog at the top, pinned icons below that, recently opened apps and documents below the pinned icons and the user and power buttons at the bottom.

Windows 11 Start Menu

Windows 11 Start Menu

Apparently File Explorer gets refreshed with a slightly new, but very familiar look.