The CRTC also confirmed that a new area code, 431, will be
The 431 area code is _NOT_ active yet.
The Winnipeg Free Press article mentions 03-November-2012 (Saturday) as the effective date for the new area code.
If you go to the CRTC or CNA or NeuStar-NANPA website (I don't know if MTS has anything re 204/431 yet at their website), they all will say the same thing, that the 204/431 Manitoba overlay is effective on Saturday 03-November-2012.
As for 10-digit local dialing...
Saturday 20-October-2012 is when ten-digit local dialing in Manitoba becomes mandatory.
Sunday 29-July-2012 is actually the date when a REMINDER recording will be played (with call completion following the recording) on local calls still dialed as just seven-digits.
Thursday 01-December-2011 is when ten-digit dialing must be made permissive (alongside seven-digit dialing) where it isn't already possible. MOST-if-not-ALL wireless providers in North America already allow ten-digit local dialing (alongside seven-digit local dialing unless one is in an overlay area). It MIGHT be possible that MTS (incumbent landline) or some landline CLECs already allow such permissive ten-digit local dialing.
All of the dates for permissive or mandatory ten-digit dialing are when a week long "phase-in" period begins for the service providers to open permissive ten-digit local dialing, or introduce the reminder recording (with call completion) for calls still dialed as just seven-digits, or convert to mandatory ten-digit local dialing.
There will be a pair of test-numbers -- one for routing purposes, and one for billing test purposes both provided by the MTS incumbent landline side of MTS-Allstream:
431-610-TEST (8378) (NOT "supposed" to return billing supervision)
431-610-BILL (2455) (is "supposed" to return billing supervision)
At this time, Bell West CLEC, Telus CLEC, and the Allstream CLEC side of MTS-Allstream have not announced plans for any 431 test-numbers. Rogers Cable CLEC and Rogers "CallNet" CLEC don't seem to have any presence in Manitoba, thus no test-numbers have been announced for Rogers neither.
The test announcement will be English "only", although it was originally intended that the test announcement (and 10-digit reminder or mandatory recordings as well) be English-then-French, but the bi-lingual plans were dropped.
The test-announcements are scheduled to begin by Monday 30-April-2012, and be disconnected (or at least access to the MTS test-numbers by long distance carriers throughout the US and Canada) no earlier than Monday 03-December-2012. It's possible that the MTS test-numbers and even access to them via IXCs in the US and Canada could continue through early January 2013.
NeuStar-NANPA issued the Planning Letter (prepared by the CNA), #419, on Friday 06-May-2011, the pdf file can be downloaded from NANPA's website at:
As to WHY you got a call with the 431 area code indicated this early, it's likely that some telemarketer has been spoofing calls with this (at present) inactive North American area code. $cammers and Tele-$pammer "marketers" are known to spoof and hi-jack unused (and even used) numbering space from not only North American telephone numbers, but even other countries' numbering plans.
Mark J. Cuccia markjcuccia at yahoo dot com Lafayette LA, formerly of New Orleans LA pre-Katrina
Any business that operates its own PBX is allowed to generate its own Caller ID strings. I don't know of any telco that vets them.
Technically, this isn't that different from the way some people used to commit DDOS attacks against large parts of the Internet - simply by sending lots of network packets with random numbers where the From: IP address is supposed to go. Today this technique no longer works in most of the world, because your Internet provider checks that the packets your computer sends to it are "from" IP numbers registered as belonging to you or to itself. If too many aren't, the provider disables your account and tells you why.
All telcos technically can, and ought to, similarly vet the numbers in Caller ID strings their PBX-owning subscribers send. But as long as the only effect of junk calls on telcos' bottom line is as paying traffic, the telcos will continue enabling the spammers and frustrating any tech that would help you block their calls.
All this would be grounds for a well-deserved class action lawsuit, but apparently AT&T now has an unbreakable defense against those, too. Darn!
Most of the CLECs do now for new orders. They aren't going to go back and retroactively filter existing lines in my experience.
For instance, I can't send callerID strings out of my PBX that aren't within my DID range out my PRI trunks like I used to be able to in the past (since I had changed up my trunks a while back). If I try to do so, it reverts back to the ANI.
When shopping around for VoIP PRIs for my customers, I've found many do filter and wouldn't remove the filters without very good justification, and just because they were a VoIP provider wasn't enough.. That was probably a flag to not allow them to do so. :)
But there are tons of trunks out there that don't filter, and probably plenty of LECs as well.
...which are then suppose to go out on the _next_ signaling link marked as "caller provided" rather than "network provided". The standards are very, very explicit about this. The carrier is allowed to mark the calling party number as "network provided" only if the carrier actually can associate the number provided by the calling party's equipment with the same Billing Telephone Number (BTN) that would be otherwise provided as ANI.
Carriers which don't do this, and mark arbitrary caller-provided numbers as "network provided", should be disconnected from the PSTN.