Huge Victory! FCC Ruling Should Clear Way for Telecoms to Act to End Robocalls
Public Policy Fellow
All of your amazing hard work has paid off. The FCC is finally saying what we’ve said all along: it’s time for phone companies to offer effective call-blocking options for consumers! It not only affirms phone companies’ right to provide these tools – it tells them to do so!
Today, the FCC announced several important proposals: “[W]e are giving the green light for robocall-blocking technology, declaring that these market-based solutions can be offered without violating our call-completion rules. The FCC wants to make it clear: telephone companies can – and in fact should – offer consumers robocall-blocking tools.”
We couldn’t have achieved this without your help. Over 50,000 people signed our petition directly to the FCC, urging them to make clear phone companies’ right to allow consumers to opt-in to robocall blocking. And 130,000 signed our petition to the FCC asking them to keep strong rules protecting your cell phones from robocalls.
Though consumers lodged thousands of complaints over unwanted calls to the FCC, and millions of complaints to the FTC, phone companies have dragged their feet in offering consumers, particularly those with traditional landlines, effective call-blocking tools. Some industry representatives have argued that telecos don’t have the legal right to engage in large-scale call-blocking.
Now, phone companies will have no more excuses – it’s time to offer free tools to block robocalls!
The FCC has also proposed to protect consumers from robocalls by making it easier to opt-out of unwanted robocalls. They will also address some potential loopholes in the robocall rules that companies would like to exploit. However, the FCC will permit some exemptions to the rules on robocalls to your cell phones, for example regarding medication refills and bank fraud alerts.
You can read the FCC’s announcement here. More details are expected in the days ahead – we will keep you updated as they come in.
Now, it’s time to turn our focus on the phone companies to demand that they offer free tools to block robocalls now – join the 325,000 people who have already signed the petition!