SC.EIR / CMEIR
Subscriber and terminal registration and control system
The SC.EIR (Equipment Identity Register) platform is a hardware and software complex registering subscribers and their terminals as soon as they appear in the network. To do this, the platform integrates with the MNO’s switching equipment and processes the CheckIMEI queries received from it, which are configured to contain IMSI and MSISDN. The data retrieval and analysis process supports all IMEI/IMEISV lengths specified in 3GPP TS 23.003.
The initial purpose of such systems is blocking blacklisted devices from operating in the network. In addition to the main function, this solution can be used to optimize the operation of DMS, SMSC, billing and other MNO's systems.
The following tasks can be performed in the course of interaction of EIR with DMS:
- Detecting a new subscriber/terminal immediately after they appear in the network, and performing appropriate autonegotiation
- Keeping the device change history of each subscriber
- Ability to remove the necessity to place specialized software on SIM cards for automatic configuration request
This reduces the load on the subscriber support service and SMSC, and improves the delivery of additional service configurations, which the subscribers will be able to use almost immediately after switching their device on.
The platform can perform the following tasks in interaction with billing:
- Marketing and other campaigns based on automatic subscription of services for subscribers meeting certain criteria. The following functionality is available for this task (the optional EIR Bonus module should be installed):
- Multiple campaigns can be held simultaneously
- Eligibility for the campaign can be based on the IMEI, TAC, IMSI, MSISDN lists or a combination thereof
- Commands to either connect or disconnect various bonuses can be sent to the billing system
- The logic may take into account the subscriber’s participation in other campaigns, as well as their history of participation in the same campaign
- Commands can be sent to the billing system using the throttling settings and a retry mechanism
- When the promotional events are held jointly with the distributors of mobile equipment, the distributors’ data about the sold devices involved in the event are received automatically
- Monitoring of customer service events and sending of information about events to external systems (the optional EIR Control module should be installed):
- Tracking of various events from different sources: SIM card change (IMSI change), owner change, termination of the contract, subscriber block, enabling of SMS forwarding, enabling of call forwarding, change of phone device, etc.
- The monitored targets list management
- Sending of events to external systems
- CDR formation
In cooperation with the M2M platform the problem of control over the legal usage of devices can be solved (the optional EIR M2M module should be installed). Special rates are often offered for M2M SIM cards which enables the users abuse of the operator’s trust using these SIM cards with other devices. EIR M2M module instantly detects such abuse and informs the M2M platform about it. The module supports several modes of events sending to the M2M platform:
- IMSI tracking:
- Every time the IMSI from the specified list is detected, an according event is sent even if the same IMSI was already detected before.
- When the IMSI from the specified list is detected, the repeated events are not sent during the defined period.
- Bundles tracking:
- The event is sent if a tracked IMSI changes the device
- The event is sent if a tracked IMSI changes the device model
- The event is sent if a tracked IMSI appears in network with IMEI which doesn’t coincide with the initial one
- The event is sent if a tracked IMSI appears in network with IMEI which doesn’t coincide with the previous one
- Reception and analysis of CheckIMEI Extended events from MSC/VLR
- Generation of responses to the switching equipment (whitelisted/graylisted/blacklisted)
- Detection of new IMEI-IMSI-MSISDN triplets in the network
- Loading IMSI-MSISDN lists from the billing (if necessary)
- Generation of queries to external systems upon detecting a triplet meeting certain criteria
- A detection can be deleted. Out of date detections are deleted automatically.
- Preparation of IMEI-IMSI-MSISDN triplet caches at first launch
- Work logging and statistics collection
- Platform monitoring
- Backup copying and other safety mechanisms
- Administrator web interface
Benefits & advantages
The SC.EIR platform can operate in three modes.
- EIR emulator mode
The platform always responds whitelisted to the switch, and then performs all other functions. The main function is rapid detection of terminals in the network which meet certain criteria, and generation of triggers to external systems.
- Real EIR operation mode
The main function is to prevent unauthorized equipment from appearing in the network. Integration with CEIR (Central EIR) can be performed for this function; alternatively, the platform itself can serve as a single base for several MNO (see next mode of operation). If a terminal gets registered in the network, additional verifications follow.
- Operation in the Central EIR mode (this version of the platform is called SC.CMEIR — Central Mobile EIR)
To support this mode of operation, the central EIR base is installed, for instance, at the regulator’s site. The management of all lists (black, white, and gray), as well as reception of statistics and reports, are performed through this node. Operational parts of EIR, integrated into the MNO’s signaling network, are installed at the operators’ sites. The operational parts receive the information used to control subscriber terminals from the central base, and transfer detailed reports of their operation to the CMEIR base.
The following tasks can be performed using SC.CMEIR platform:
- Simultaneous prevention of using illegal equipment in the networks of several MNOs (for instance, all MNOs of a country)
- Linking the device to the subscriber. Two scenarios are possible:
- The subscriber links their device to their SIM card to prevent other persons from using the device
- Automatic linking of devices to subscribers upon first use of a given IMEI
- Capability to create a premium service of registration in the network with any devices (IMEIs)
Different logic can be applied to roamers and local subscribers.
The company portfolio has installations with the following peak capacity:
- storage of 200 million unique triplets
- 10000 MAP_CHECK_IMEI operations received per second
- capability to sent up to 1000 triggers per second to external systems
- reception of files or HTTP queries from the billing with updated IMSI-MSISDN bundle, limited to the half of the daily active subscriber base
The actual performance of the solution depends on the MNO network conditions, and may be linearly increased through horizontal scaling of the system.
Reliability and Stability
In the basic configuration, the SC.EIR platform is installed on two dedicated servers. This number may increase in order to increase the platform’s reliability and performance. Duplication principles allow the load in the system to be automatically distributed and also ensure the security of information. Self-diagnostic tests are used to check whether the equipment is operating correctly, without any effect on the platform’s performance.
Integration and Options for Expansion
SC.EIR can be easily integrated with the solutions of any manufacturers. The platform has a modular structure, which allows separate software components of the system to be placed on dedicated hardware for scaling, performance improvement, and increased level of integration with the MNO network.
The following functionality expansion options are possible:
- Installing EIR M2M module
- Installing EIR Bonus module
- Installing EIR Control module
- Modification of interfaces to external systems in order to send triggers to them
- Expansion of a functioning SC.EIR platform to a SC.SMS-Settings platform (DMS system)
- Upgrade of SC.EIR platform to the LBS (Location Based Services) function
In addition to the standard capabilities, the SC.EIR platform offers the following additional advantages:
- Creating and keeping up to date a database on all subscribers and their terminals for further processing, analysis, and report formation
- Rapid detection (under 10 seconds after appearance) of new IMEI-IMSI-MSISDN triplets in the network
- Capability for multiregional use of the platform, where each EIR processes detections of local subscribers, and the detections of subscribers from other regions are sent by it to their home EIR
- Capability of receiving CHECK_IMEI events using a variety of protocols: MAP, S13 (Diameter), SOAP, HTTP, SMPP
- Capability of interaction with MSC/MSS of various manufacturers, both directly or through STP
- Capability of interaction with MSC/MSS using the MAP protocol both on top of a SS7 network and through a SIGTRAN connection (M3UA)
- Capability to enrich triplets with subscriber’s location by means of PSI queries
The following is the scheme of simultaneous use of several SC.EIR platforms in various regions. In order to operate according to this scheme, each installation must have IMSI lists with region assignment.