Blocking Inbound Calls based on Caller ID
Blocking Inbound Calls based on Caller ID
There are instances when users would like to block certain callers from calling them, only to send them to voicemail or not answering the call.
ShoreTel has a couple of options for blocking callers based on their Caller ID.
There are two options available for the ShoreTel system to block calls based on Caller ID.
- Personalized Call Handling
- ShoreTel Professional Services – Nuisances Call Handler
Option 1: (Individual Basis) “Personalized Call Handling”
ShoreTel Release 9 introduced “Personalized Call Handling” capabilities which allows individual users to block numbers based on Caller ID.
This is on a user by user basis, not system wide.
This is accomplished within the user’s Licensed Communicator
Personalized Call Handling is configured via the ShoreTel Communicator and is available to all system users that are authorized for the following Communicator Manager types:
- Workgroup Agent
- Workgroup Supervisor
Personalized Call Handling does not require administrator authorization for users assigned to these Call Manager types.
Users must setup a Call Routing Plan
A Call Routing Plan manages a user’s inbound voice calls. The plan consists of call handling rules, each of which specifies a method of handling a call when a condition set is valid. The plan enables and prioritizes selected rules. The user’s inbound calls are evaluated against the call handling rules. The highest priority rule with conditions that are satisfied define the handling method for the call.
This section describes the structure and call handling rules, followed by a discussion of creating a call routing plan from these rules.
Call Handling Rules
Call handling rules define evaluation conditions and handling action. When the rule is active and the condition is satisfied, the action determines how the call is handled.
Three components comprise a call handling rule: Name, Condition, and Action.
The following sections describe call handling rule components.
The name is the label by which Call Manager and Director refer to a call handling rule.
Users specify the name when they create the rule.
The condition is the filtering criteria that determines if a corresponding call handling action is performed. When a condition statement consists of multiple criteria, each criterion must be satisfied or the action is not performed.
Call Handling Rules defines the following six types of criteria
- Phone number match:
The phone number match is satisfied when the caller ID of the inbound call is a subset of the specified match type. Users can specify a maximum of ten phone number match entries.
Users can select one of the following match types:
specific number – user specifies the number that must match the caller ID; numbers can be internal extension or phone number external to the system.
off system extension – user specifies the off system extension that must match the caller ID.
any internal extension starting with – user specifies the digits that must match the first digits of numbers originating from internal callers.
any external extension starting with – user specifies the digits that must match the first digits of numbers originating from phone numbers external to the system.
private – matches all calls that are identified by caller ID as private.
out of area / unknown – matches all calls that caller ID identifies as out of area or unknown.
Every internal number – matches all calls originating from a device within the ShoreTel network.
Every external number – matches all calls originating from a device not located within the ShoreTel network.
- I am on the phone: This criterion is satisfied when the user’s phone is busy.
- Call Handling Mode: This criterion is satisfied when the user’s active Call Handling Mode matches the specified mode.
- Time of day: This criterion is satisfied when the call is received during the specified time ranges. Time of day entries are based on the time zone setting of the site to which the user is assigned.
- Day of week: This criterion is satisfied when the call is received on one of the specified days. Day of week entries are based on the time zone setting of the site to which the user is assigned.
- DNIS Match: This criterion is satisfied when the DNIS of the inbound call matches the specified number.
Workgroup and Hunt Group DNIS numbers are not propagated to members that answer group calls. This prevents the filtering calls on the basis of DNIS numbers not directly associated to the entity ultimately receiving the call.
The action specifies the resolution for calls that match the specified condition.
Call Handling Rules define the following five action types:
- Forward Call to Specific Number: This action routes the call to the specified number.
- Users can select one of the following number types:
— Specific Number
— Off System Extension
- Forward Call to Voice Mail: This action routes the call to the recipient’s voice mail.
- Forward Call to Auto Find Me: This action routes the call to voicemail, which then forwards the call to the recipient’s Find Me number.
- Forward Call to Announced Find Me: This action routes the call to voicemail, which then forwards the call to the recipient’s Find Me number. The system attempts to announce the caller’s name to the recipient, which may require the caller to record their name before the call is presented to the recipient.
- Play Ringtone: This action programs the ShoreTel IP Phone to play the designated ring tone that announces the presence of the inbound call to the recipient.
Option 2: (System Wide) “ShoreTel Nuisance Call Handler Application”
The ShoreTel Nuisance Call Handler Application is a purchasable option from ShoreTel Professional Services.
The ShoreTel Nuisance Call Handler application is a Windows Service run all the time. (System Based)
It will monitor all the stations on the system for inbound external calls. When a valid call presents the caller ID is retrieved. If the caller ID is empty or blocked then the call is immediately blind transferred from the user’s phone to a preconfigured phone number.
If the caller ID is set then it is compared to a list of blocked caller IDs and if it is in the list, the caller is immediately disconnected. Only calls which present with caller ID and whose caller ID isn’t on the blocked list continue to ring at the user’s phone.
In addition to the service, a separate configuration program packaged as a standard Windows desktop application is also installed and available. This must be run directly on the server. It allows easy modification of the blocked caller ID list as well the extension to transfer callers to who present without caller ID. It also allows viewing the services log file and configuring some of the logging options. Finally it allows stopping and starting the service.
The application must be installed on a ShoreTel Server. This may be the customer’s Headquarters server or it could be a separately configured Distributed Voice Server (DVS.)