CHARLESTON (Hinton News) — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey on Monday called on the Federal Communications Commission to require the telephone providers that route calls across the U.S. telephone network to implement more rigorous measures to prevent illegal and fraudulent robocalls from bombarding Americans.
“Robocalls continue to be a major annoyance we all face, and our office is pleased to partner with attorneys general from other states to urge companies in communications to stop these frustrating calls,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “Our goal is to stop scammers overseas from preying upon American consumers as we continue fighting robocalls.”
Illegal robocalls cost consumers, law enforcement and the telecom industry approximately $13.5 billion every year.
Often, these calls originate from overseas scam actors who spoof U.S.-based phone numbers, and the FCC recently required the phone companies that let these calls onto the U.S. telephone network to do more to keep them out. The FCC is now proposing expanding many of these rules to those few phone companies that, although largely invisible to the public, are exclusively responsible for routing these fraudulent and illegal calls across the U.S. phone network, regardless of where the calls originate.
In their letter, Attorney General Morrisey and a bipartisan coalition of 51 attorneys general support the FCC’s proposal to extend the implementation of STIR/SHAKEN, a caller ID authentication technology that helps prevent spoofed calls, to all “intermediate” phone providers in the United States.
Currently, only providers that originate call traffic are required to implement STIR/SHAKEN. The coalition also urged the FCC to require providers to adopt these protections and additional measures to cut down on illegal and fraudulent robocalls, including responding to law enforcement traceback requests within 24 hours and blocking illegal traffic, as soon as possible.
If all telecom companies have the same robocall mitigation practices, bad actors will not be able to exploit inconsistencies among providers and law enforcement will be better able to identify and prosecute the bad actors who try to profit from illegal robocalls.
Attorney General Morrisey is joined in sending this comment letter by the attorneys general of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
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