The U.S. government has added several areas of data that video relay service (VRS) providers have to furnish in order to be paid for the service.
On March 27, 2012, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) posted on the Federal Register a correction to its final rule—Structure and Practices of the Video Relay Service Program—that contains the information collection changes.
The VRS program is a form of telecommunications relay service (TRS) that enables hearing disabled individuals who use American sign language to communicate with voice telephone users through video equipment, rather than through typed text. Video equipment links the VRS user with a TRS operator—called a “communications assistant” (CA)—so the VRS user and the CA can see and communicate with each other in signed conversation with the message being relayed to the third person on the call.
The latest amendment to the VRS rules—which were implemented Sept. 26, 2011—says for telecommunications relay service (TRS) providers to receive payment, the provider must support the claim by furnishing the VRS fund administrator with data. The information that must be supplied includes:
-- The call record identification (ID) sequence
-- The CA ID number
-- The call session start and end times
-- The conversation’s start and end times
-- The incoming telephone number and Internet protocol (IP) address (if call originates with an IP-based device) at the time of call
-- The outbound telephone number and IP address (if call terminates with an IP-based device) at the time of call
-- The total conversation minutes
-- The total session minutes
-- The call center (identified by assigned center ID number) that handled the call
-- The URL address through which the call was initiated
The FCC implemented the original VRS rules to prevent fraud, waste and abuse by VRS providers.