Attorney Gen. Steve Marshall Welcomes FCC Order Speeding Up Barriers to Illegal Robocalls

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CONTRIBUTED BY THE OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL

Attorney General Steve Marshall welcomed the Federal Communications Commission’s recent decision to speed up full implementation of caller ID authentication technology as mandated by law to help block deceptive robocalls.

“Our hatred of robocalls is one thing that unites all Americans, and when some of these operators cross the line by using spoofed caller IDs and phony phone numbers to deceive consumers, they are breaking the law,” Marshall said. “Although a federal statute was signed into law by President Trump in 2019 to address the bulk of illegal robocalls, many scam callers have taken advantage of delays in the law’s implementation to avoid detection. In response, last August all 51 attorneys general urged the FCC to speed up the law’s compliance deadline so that illegal robocallers would have no more loopholes to exploit American consumers. I welcome the FCC’s decision to begin enforcement of the law a year early.”

Under the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (TRACED Act), all phone companies are required to implement technology on their networks to prevent robocallers from masking their real identity and location.

Large phone companies were ordered to implement the technology by June 2021, but smaller phone companies were originally given an extension until June 2023. Not surprisingly, illegal operators deliberately shifted their tactics to target Americans through smaller size phone networks. After the urging of state attorneys general, including Marshall, the FCC has now shortened the deadline for small phone companies to comply with the TRACED Act to June 30, 2022.

The public is urged to report illegal robocalls to the Federal Trade Commission by visiting www.FTC.gov or by calling 1-877-FTC-HELP, and to the Alabama Attorney General’s Office by visiting www.AlabamaAG.gov or by calling 1-800-392-5658.

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