More anti-robocall legislation is making its way to the House Energy & Commerce Committee

Polycount

TS Evangelist
Staff member

Back in March, the FTC slapped four robocalling organizations with multi-million dollar fines for their behavior, and in May, the Senate nearly unanimously voted to pass an anti-robocalling bill.

That bill, dubbed the "Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act" (TRACED), will soon be making its way to the House Energy & Commerce Committee alongside the new "Stopping Bad Robocalls Act."

For those who aren't up to date on the anti-robocall fight, the TRACED Act's primary goal is to provide law enforcement with more powerful tools to catch and prosecute robo-scammers. Further, the Act will require mobile providers to "authenticate and block" robocalls from their end. Many telecoms already provide this sort of functionality to their customers, but the TRACED Act makes it a universal requirement.

The Stopping Bad Robocalls Act offers further consumer protections. For example, under the Act, robocall organizations will be required to check a dedicated database that will contain all "nationwide" phone numbers that have been disconnected and reassigned to new users.

After doing so, they will need to acquire "express consent" from the new phone number holder before they are allowed to make any automated calls.

The Act will also outlaw many robocall methods that are currently in use, while simultaneously making it even easier for law enforcement and the government as a whole to track down and punish scammers. You can read the Act in its entirety on the House's official website.

Lead image credit: Shutterstock

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PEnnn

TS Guru
"For example, under the Act, robocall organizations will be required to check a dedicated database that will contain all "nationwide" phone numbers that have been disconnected and reassigned to new users."

Hello?? We already have a DO NOT CALL database....and how is that working for ya??

"After doing so, they will need to acquire "express consent" from the new phone number holder before they are allowed to make any automated calls."

Yes, I am sure the imbeciles and scammers running those operations will respect that....pathetic how the scammers are always 12 steps ahead of our genius politicians!!

Most likely they will revisit the issue in 2045 and try to fix it again......
 

Carlie Coats

TS Rookie
...We already have a DO NOT CALL database....and how is that working for ya??...
It doesn't, given the FCC's inaction.

Instead, as a modest proposal:

Let use of an obfuscated number for DO NOT CALL violation constitute an aggravated offense, for which the penalties are: $5000 statutory damages + attorney and court costs + reimbursement to telecommunication companies for help in identifying the offender, at 200% of costs.

You need buy-in from the telecoms for success. Reward them for helping (contrary to the current regime). They need a profit for doing so.

$5000 damages + costs is enough to maybe make it worthwhile. And (IMNHO) that's a more productive employment than ambulance-chasing :) --- one hopes, enough so to get legal-community buy-in.

FWIW