AG Chris Carr Urges the FCC to Strengthen Efforts to Stop Robocalls

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Friday, August 30th, 2019

Attorney General Chris Carr urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to encourage telecom companies to implement call blocking and call authentication solutions that would protect consumers from illegal robocalls and spoofing. Today’s comment letter to the FCC comes after Attorney General Carr and a bipartisan public-private coalition of 51 attorneys general and 12 phone companies unveiled the Anti-Robocall Principles to fight illegal robocalls last week.

“We are continuing the fight against illegal robocalls and spoofing on many fronts,” said Attorney General Chris Carr. “I am joining with my fellow Attorneys General to encourage the FCC to take common sense steps to combat the prevalence of robocalls and spoofing.”

In their comments to the FCC, the coalition of Attorneys General state that telecom providers should:

Offer free, automatic call-blocking services to all customers. The call-block services should be based on reasonable analytics and should not block important calls, including emergency alerts or automated calls that customers have signed up for, like medical reminders.

Monitor network traffic to identify patterns consistent with robocalls and take action to cut off the calls or notify law enforcement.

Implement the STIR/SHAKEN caller ID call authentication technology, which will help ensure that telephone calls are originating from secure, verified numbers, not spoofed sources. The coalition supports the FCC’s proposal to take regulatory action against telecom companies that do not comply with STIR/SHAKEN.

Develop caller ID authentication to prevent robocalls to landline telephones. This is particularly urgent because the people scammed by robocall scammers are often elderly consumers or live in rural areas and primarily use landline technology.

Many of these actions are also covered in the Anti-Robocall Principles, a set of eight principles focused on addressing illegal robocalls through prevention and enforcement. Twelve phone companies, including Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint, have already signed on to the principles.

Attorney General Carr is joined in signing these comments by attorneys general from all 50 states and Washington, D.C.