FTC takes a stand against illegal robocalls
By Maureen Mahoney on Tuesday, January 27th, 2015
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has weighed in: telephone carriers can do more to stop robocalls!
Over 200 million consumers have signed up for the federal Do Not Call list, but many of them continue to be disturbed by incessant robocalls. That’s why we’re elated that the FTC is taking a stand. In comments submitted to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Friday, FTC staff said that telephone carriers can pursue technologies that will immediately stop many of the illegal robocalls that threaten consumers.
In September, the National Association of Attorneys General requested that the FCC issue an opinion on whether carriers could legally implement existing technologies to block illegal robocalls. The FCC fielded a slew of comments, including those from Consumers Union and the FTC.
Consumers Union has long been pushing phone carriers to take meaningful action to stop robocalls. We’re especially grateful that over 50,000 supporters like you signed our petition to the FCC, and that many of you offered your own personal comments. We need your voices to help us stand up to industry lobbying. Take a look at our comments to the FCC here.
Telephone carriers have typically avoided offering call-blockers that shut down illegal robocalls. US Telecom, a trade association, has argued that carriers can’t legally implement these types of services. Customers of a few providers, including Comcast Xfinity, Verizon FiOS Digital Voice, and AT&T U-verse, can sign up for Nomorobo, a free service that automatically disconnects illegal robocalls. But so far, this only covers a relatively small number of landlines.
We’re demanding that carriers provide all consumers with free protection from illegal robocalls. We’re hoping that the FCC makes a quick decision in favor of call blocking. In the meantime, click here to learn more about robocalls and what you can do to protect yourself.
Are illegal robocalls affecting your quality of life? We want to hear from you.