Top Experts and Policymakers to Discuss Robocall Solutions at FCC

Maureen Mahoney
Public Policy Fellow

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

Eager to learn about the latest technologies to stop those unwanted robocalls that ring your phone all day long? The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has got you covered.

Tomorrow, September 16th, the FCC is hosting their Robocall Blocking and Caller ID Spoofing Workshop. Regulators, phone industry representatives, technical experts, entrepreneurs, and consumer advocates are slated to speak. Because of Consumers Union’s leadership and the work of activists like you to bring attention to this issue, CU’s own Delara Derakhshani has been asked to speak.

The workshop will survey the latest developments in call-blocking technology. It will also explore the ongoing efforts by the Internet Engineering Task Force to develop long-term solutions to call spoofing. “Spoofing” is the practice of disguising caller ID information, and is often used by phone scammers to trick consumers.

We’re looking forward to hearing about the existing tools that phone companies could offer to their customers, and about the promising technologies on the horizon. We’ve long questioned why the phone companies – with all of their expertise and resources – haven’t offered their customers effective, advanced robocall-blocking tools. This workshop should illuminate the many options open to them.

The FCC has been increasingly active on robocalls.  Just last week, the FCC cited Lyft and First National Bank for forcing their customers to agree to telemarketing robocalls. In June, the FCC clarified that phone companies have the full legal ability to offer robocall-blocking technology to their customers. In May, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said that phone companies “should” provide these tools.

The workshop will be streaming live on the FCC’s website on Wednesday from 9-3 Eastern. I’ll be there too – feel free to drop a question in the comments that you’d like answered at the meeting! Click here for more information and for a link to the livestream. The FCC also has a consumer guide on robocalls.

And, don’t forget to make your voice heard that you want an end to robocalls! Sign our petition to the phone companies to offer free robocall-blocking tools.

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