Protect Your Customers, Empower Your Business: A Guide to Number Masking with Plivo

Jun 24, 2024
Protect Your Customers, Empower Your Business: A Guide to Number Masking with Plivo

Privacy breaches are obviously bad for business, but the hidden cost of a breach may be more than you realize. When a delivery or rideshare driver misuses a customer’s personal information, it’s not only dangerous but damaging to your brand’s reputation. Such incidents can expose the business to legal and regulatory challenges, as well as increase customer churn and result in a revenue loss. 

Number masking is the simplest way to mitigate the risk of a privacy breach and build your end users' trust. Plivo's Number Masking feature enables businesses to mask their customers' and partners' real phone numbers, thereby shielding their actual contact details. Continue reading to discover how number masking works and how to get started.

How does number masking work?

Number masking enables anonymous interactions to safeguard user data during everyday transactions—be it food delivery, hailing a ride, or accepting a package.

Let's consider a real-world application of number masking through the experience of Rahul, who orders groceries online. Concerned about privacy, Rahul wishes to avoid sharing his personal phone number directly with the delivery service.

  • Upon placing the order through a grocery delivery app, the app employs Plivo's Number Masking feature to assign a temporary phone number specifically for communication related to this order.
  • Rahul, wishing to share some additional delivery instructions with the delivery agent, calls the temporary number provided by the app.
  • Plivo's system seamlessly routes the call from Rahul to the delivery agent, utilizing the temporary number. Throughout this process, the actual phone numbers of both Rahul and the delivery agent remain hidden from each other.
  • If the delivery agent needs to clarify the delivery instructions or communicate any updates related to the order, he can also use the temporary number to reach Rahul.

Here’s what this process looks like in practice.

Ultimately, Plivo’s Number Masking feature acts as a bridge between customers and businesses, allowing them to communicate effectively without compromising personal phone numbers.

Benefits of Plivo’s Number Masking API

Unfortunately, many number masking solutions on the market require businesses to develop their solution from the ground up, a process that can be both time-consuming and labor-intensive. For many companies, the complexity of implementing number masking presents too high a barrier. 

Plivo's off-the-shelf Number Masking API is designed to eliminate this complexity, making implementation straightforward in mere two simple steps.

Get started with Plivo's Number Masking API

With Plivo, your business can bypass nearly 80% of the time and effort required to develop a number-masking solution from scratch. Just a few steps are all it takes to get up and running:

  1. Register with Plivo.
  2. Purchase preferred numbers to serve as virtual numbers through the Plivo console, or procure a phone number using the API.
  3. Create a number masking session using the API by providing the first_party and second_party numbers, along with other required parameters tailored to your specific use case.
  4. Plivo will automatically handle the assignment of the virtual number to the session.

Congratulations! You've now successfully set up a number masking session. Test the session by initiating a call to the virtual number, which will be correctly routed to the intended recipient.


What else is possible with Plivo’s Number Masking API?

Beyond providing number masking at an affordable cost, Plivo's API enhances security through PIN-based authentication, ensuring that calls from unregistered sources undergo verification before connection. Plivo's intelligent algorithm also manages the allocation of virtual numbers efficiently, ensuring their optimal use.

Call recordings is another feature available through Plivo’s Number Masking API. While keeping all user information private, Plivo can record calls for quality assurance. Recordings are stored on Plivo servers free of charge for 90 days. Encryption is available for even more security. 

Number masking is a transformative tool for businesses aiming to prioritize customer privacy and foster trust in their brand. With Plivo's comprehensive Number Masking API, deploying this security measure is more accessible than ever. For more details refer to our developer documentation.

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Frequently asked questions

Why should I register for a Sender ID?

While it’s not mandatory, Plivo recommends registering a sender ID. Messages sent without a registered sender ID are sent with a generic identifier such as “SMS” or “INFO.”

How can I perform required DLT registration?

DLT stands for distributed ledger technology. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) requires any entity who wants to send SMS to register in order to curb unsolicited commercial communication (UCC). Required information includes organizational details, message headers and templates, and required consent information

Read our guide How to Complete DLT Registration for Sending Text Messages in India for information about the process.

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