News Column

"Method and Apparatus for Providing Trusted Caller Id Services" in Patent Application Approval Process

September 11, 2014



By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Politics & Government Week -- A patent application by the inventor STERMAN, BARUCH (EFRAT, IL), filed on February 20, 2013, was made available online on August 28, 2014, according to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by VerticalNews correspondents.

This patent application is assigned to Vonage Network Llc.

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Embodiments of the present invention generally relate to telecommunication systems and, more particularly, to a method and apparatus for providing verification of the identification of a first entity to a second entity.

"Voice over IP (VoIP) is a technological development in the field of telecommunications that is utilized to transmit voice conversations over a data network using the Internet Protocol (IP). After a user subscribes to a VoIP service, the user can make/receive phone calls to/from other VoIP subscribers or to public switched telephone network (PSTN) customers and access a number of features associated with the VoIP service, such as call waiting, three-way calling, call forwarding, voicemail service, and the like.

"Calls from a VoIP caller typically display the caller ID information of the caller to the called party. The inventor has observed that it is very easy for a VoIP caller to 'spoof' his/her caller ID to appear as someone they are not. Caller ID information is often centrally maintained on the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) in a Caller Name (CNAM) database. Generally, service providers access the CNAM database to retrieve caller ID data. However, the CNAM request for information is based on the calling number that is provided by the caller and, in the case of a VoIP call, that number is freely editable by the caller without any verification. This prevents called parties from screening calls from unknown or undesirable callers (such as telemarketers).

"Accordingly, there exists a need in the art for a method and apparatus for providing improved caller ID information in a telecommunication system that can recognize when a caller ID is legitimate and conveying that information to the called party."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent application, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventor's summary information for this patent application: "Methods and apparatus for validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity are provided herein. In some embodiments, a method for validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity may include registering the first entity with a trust authority, wherein registering the first entity includes authenticating the identity of the first entity, and associating a unique code with a caller ID name (CNAM) of the first entity, receiving an identifier in association with a call request, determining that the identifier is correlated with the unique code, and providing to the second entity the CNAM together with an indication of validity.

"In some embodiments, a method of validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity may include registering the second entity in a database maintained by the first entity, wherein registering includes associating a personal code in the secure database with one or more of the second entity's contact numbers, receiving a call from the second entity, retrieving, from the database, the second entity's personal code, after the call is established, providing a verification message including the second entity's personal code to verify that the second entity called the first entity.

"In some embodiments, a method of validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity may include registering the second entity in a database maintained by the first entity, wherein registering includes associating a personal code in the secure database with one or more of the second entity's contact numbers, retrieving, from the database, the second entity's personal code, calling the second entity, and after the call is established, providing a verification message including the second entity's personal code to verify the identity of the first entity.

"Other and further embodiments of the present invention are described below.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

"So that the manner in which the above recited features of the present invention can be understood in detail, a more particular description of the invention, briefly summarized above, may be had by reference to embodiments, some of which are illustrated in the appended drawings. It is to be noted, however, that the appended drawings illustrate only typical embodiments of this invention and are therefore not to be considered limiting of its scope, for the invention may admit to other equally effective embodiments.

"FIG. 1 depicts a block diagram of a system for validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity, according to one or more embodiments;

"FIG. 2 depicts a flow diagram of a method for validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity, according to one or more embodiments;

"FIG. 3A depicts a flow diagram of a method for validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity, according to one or more embodiments;

"FIG. 3B depicts a signaling diagram associated with the method of FIG. 3A for validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity, according to one or more embodiments;

"FIG. 4A depicts a signaling diagram of a method of validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity for an outbound call without the use of a third party trusted authority, according to one or more embodiments;

"FIG. 4B depicts a signaling diagram of a method of validating an identity of a first entity to a second entity for an inbound call without the use of a third party trusted authority, according to one or more embodiments; and

"FIG. 5 depicts a computer system that can be utilized in various embodiments of the present invention, according to one or more embodiments.

"While the method and apparatus for providing verification of the identification of a first entity to a second entity is described herein by way of example for several embodiments and illustrative drawings, those skilled in the art will recognize that method and apparatus for providing support for an Internet-based service is not limited to the embodiments or drawings described. It should be understood, that the drawings and detailed description thereto are not intended to limit embodiments to the particular form disclosed. Rather, the intention is to cover all modifications, equivalents and alternatives falling within the spirit and scope of method and apparatus for providing verification of the identification of a first entity to a second entity as defined by the appended claims. Any headings used herein are for organizational purposes only and are not meant to limit the scope of the description or the claims. As used herein, the word 'may' is used in a permissive sense (i.e., meaning having the potential to), rather than the mandatory sense (i.e., meaning must). Similarly, the words 'include', 'including', and 'includes' mean including, but not limited to."

URL and more information on this patent application, see: STERMAN, BARUCH. Method and Apparatus for Providing Trusted Caller Id Services. Filed February 20, 2013 and posted August 28, 2014. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=3980&p=80&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=20140821.PD.&OS=PD/20140821&RS=PD/20140821

Keywords for this news article include: Telecommunications, Vonage, Vonage Network Llc.

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Source: Politics & Government Week


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