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AG Derek Schmidt urges FCC to continue efforts to allow consumers to block robocalls

Release Date: Oct 09, 2018

TOPEKA – (October 9, 2018) – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt this week asked the Federal Communications Commission to continue working to adopt rules that allow consumers to block unwanted robocalls.

In comments filed yesterday, Schmidt and the attorneys general of 34 other states emphasized that the solution to the plague of unwanted robocalls cannot be addressed by law enforcement alone. Rather, it will require technological solutions from telephone service providers.

“The State AGs intend to continue our fight against illegal robocalls and abusive calling practices on the front lines – by providing public education and outreach, receiving and responding to individual consumer complaints, and taking appropriate enforcement action when possible,” the attorneys general wrote. “We will continue to do everything possible to track down and hold accountable those who engage in illegal calling practices. The State AGs recognize that no single tool or method will solve this serious consumer problem. Therefore, we are committed to continuing our multi-pronged attack of working closely with all interested parties, including our federal counterparts and members of the telecommunications industry.”

The attorneys general lauded efforts by the FCC – encouraged by the state attorneys general – that last year resulted in a new rule allowing telecommunications providers to block calls from numbers that are invalid, unallocated or unused. However, fraudulent robocallers have adapted to this new rule by spoofing known numbers, including often the person receiving the call’s own number.

The FCC is currently considering additional action that would adopt protocols for call verification, which would allow the telephone providers to authenticate legitimate calls and block illegally spoofed calls.

A copy of the attorneys general’s comments is available at http://bit.ly/2QGfYhD.

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