HLR Lookup is a common name for an SS7 application method called SRI_SM. The method is used to obtain necessary routing information required to initiate communication. It has been widely used to obtain subscriber personal information.
HLR Lookups have been used for a wide range of applications. In recent years, controls have been introduced to protect networks from fraud and protect subscribers from privacy breaches as well as identity theft.
Roaming status, Roamed Country, Sim Identifiers and Subscriber Status are now mostly blocked. HLR Lookup still supports basic number validation and low volume message routing applications.
Most HLR Lookup providers have access to a limited set of network operators, obtaining complete country access and global coverage requires aggregation of service providers at a network operator level. Moreover, the network access of HLR Lookup providers can be subject to change without notice due to the filtering techniques used by mobile operators to protect their networks and subscribers.
XConnect’s Number Portability Query – Live (NPQ-Live) service is powered by a mesh of the world’s best HLR Lookup providers. XConnect aggregate services at a network level and proactively test each provider’s access on a daily basis so as to ensure the best coverage and consistency. To assure long term stability and service consistency, XConnect have adopted privacy-by-design principles so as to support services with a clear legal basis.
Access to the service is via a simple, secure, scalable, and real-time query interface using enum or https.
HLR Lookups came to market as a by product of A2P SMS messaging and over time the scope of use and efficacy claims have evolved. The truth is, despite claims, HLR Lookups have limited applications. Coverage and performance limitations prevent widespread use for routing, privacy controls curtail application for marketing and fraud prevention, and limited customer support can make the service unreliable for enterprise use. However, HLR Lookups do fulfil valuable market requirements provided that measures are taken to overcome limitations.
In 2019, XConnect developed a new HLR Lookup service because many existing solutions had limited coverage, were unreliable and made false claims about their capabilities.
A HLR Lookup service should have consistent coverage and accuracy, be clear about the use-cases it can and cannot support as well as be professionally supported so that customers can use it with confidence. XConnect’s NPQ-Live service is powered by HLR Lookups and XConnect’s proprietary number range data.
In the past, Home Location Register Lookup (HLR Lookup) was the go to service to resolve number portability, here are five reasons why this is