The business messaging market will be worth US$19.4 billion in 20211, with around 97.5% of that spend coming from A2P SMS (US$18.95 billion). But it could be worth so much more. The total A2P SMS market could be worth US$26.94 billion if all A2P SMS traffic was monetised. This means US$7.9 billion will be lost to grey routes in 2021. Or put another way, that is US$21.6 million lost to potentially fraudulent traffic every day. Or, if that figure were divided between every mobile operator, they would receive an additional annual payment of US$10.5 million.

To ascertain how mobile operators are reacting to the threat posed by fraud, MEF has once again teamed up with Mobilesquared to look at the impact fraudulent A2P SMS traffic had on the business messaging ecosystem in 2020, and how this might affect the opportunity in 2021.

This report explores the key findings from the exclusive mobile operator  research and follows on from a similar project conducted by Mobilesquared for MEF in 4Q 2019.

Supported by

Download the free Report now

Some of the findings from the Mobile Operators and A2P SMS Report

  • The business messaging market will be worth $19.4 billion in 20211, with around 97.5% of that spend coming from A2P SMS (US$18.95 billion).
  • The total A2P SMS market could be worth US$26.94 billion1 if all A2P SMS traffic was monetised. This means US$7.9 billion will be lost to grey routes in 2021
  • One of the main reasons for this revenue leakage is that almost one-third of mobile operators have not invested in a messaging fraud detection solution leaving their network open and vulnerable to fraudulent traffic.
  • 70% of respondents believe they lost up to 10% of their annual A2P SMS revenues to fraud in 2020.
  • 12.5% believe they lost up to 15%, and 5% estimate that figure
    was closer to 20%, with 8% not knowing.
  • 85% of mobile operators believe there will always be a level of fraudulent traffic traversing their network even when they have deployed a messaging fraud detection solution.

The research of mobile operators was an online survey running from December 2020 to April 2021. In total 66 mobile operators participated in the research, including Polkomtel, Unitel, Libyana, Deutsche Telekom, eir, Hutchison Drei, MegaFon, Omantel, Millicom, Tunisie Telecom, Bell Mobility, Etisalat, Nuevatel PCS, Sunrise, China Mobile, Bharti Airtel, Telia (multiple markets), Telefonica (multiple markets), Deutsche Telekom, AT&T mobility, Vodafone  (multiple markets), MTN (multiple markets), Swisscom, Telenor (multiple markets), True Corporation, Bouygues Telecom.

MEF continues to champion SMS Firewalls and anti-fraud solutions. They absolutely should be implemented by all mobile network operators (MNOs), yet one in four is still leaving their SMS traffic unpoliced. Things are however improving with 45 more operators implementing anti-fraud solutions during 2021.

If you have questions or comments on A2P Anti-Fraud and Market Development, we at MEF would like to hear from you. The ecosystem is working together to fight A2P Fraud so come and join in!

Dario BettiCEO