FCC and Robocalls Abuse
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FCC and Robocalls Abuse

Last Updated on October 24, 2023 by IS Back Office

A Robocall is short for a “robotic call,” are automated phone calls that are often made by computerized systems to deliver pre-recorded messages or to connect individuals with a live person (usually a telemarketer).

While some legitimate organizations use robocalls for informational or service purposes (e.g., appointment reminders from medical offices or notifications from schools), they are often associated with unwanted and unsolicited calls, such as telemarketing scams and spam.

On October 16, 2023 The FCC announced the release of 20 new Enforcement Bureau orders to begin removing specified non-compliant voice service providers from the agency’s Robocall Mitigation Database.

“Robocalls are a plague on our phones,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel.

The below companies have 14 days to provide the FCC with reasons as to why they should not be removed from the database. If they are removed from the database, they are required terminate voice service providers to stop carrying the companies’ traffic.

The Companies On the FCC List

The FCC list of companies potentially non-compliant with Anti-Robocall Rules include:

2054235 Alberta
Claude ICT Poland
Computer Integrated Solutions
Datacom Specialists
Etihad Etisalat (Mobily)
Humbolt VoIP
My Taxi Ride
National Cloud Communications
NewWave Consulting
Phone GS
Route 66 Broadband
Tech Bizz Solutions
Vida Network Technologies
Viettel Business Solutions

Business Owners can get help with cloud based PBX Automated Attendants and other features to ease some of the burden of Robocalls.

As always, contact us for help.

Information Systems Back Office

Robocalls Have Become a Significant Issue

Robocalls have become a significant issue globally due to the proliferation of fraudulent and spammy calls. These calls can be annoying, intrusive, and in some cases, they are used to perpetrate scams that defraud people of their money or personal information.

In response to this problem, many countries have enacted regulations and laws to restrict or penalize the use of a robocall for fraudulent or unsolicited purposes.

For example, in the United States, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and the Truth in Caller ID Act have been implemented to combat unwanted robocalls.

This FCC rule is another step in the right direction.

dont trust callerid infographic

Steps to Protect Yourself from a Robocall

To protect yourself from an unwanted robocall, you can take several steps, such as:

  1. Register your phone number on the National Do Not Call Registry (in the U.S.) or equivalent services in other countries.
  2. Install a call-blocking app or use the built-in call-blocking features on your smartphone.
  3. Be cautious about sharing your phone number online or with unknown entities.
  4. Don’t answer calls from unknown or suspicious numbers.
  5. Report an unwanted robocall to your local regulatory authority, such as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the U.S.

Are Robocalls Legal

The legality of a robocall varies from one jurisdiction to another, and it depends on the specific circumstances and the purpose of the call. In many places, some forms of robocalls are legal, while others are not. Here are some general guidelines:

  1. Commercial Telemarketing Robocall: In many countries, including the United States, Canada, and the European Union, there are laws and regulations that restrict or prohibit unsolicited commercial telemarketing robocalls. These laws often require telemarketers to obtain consent from the recipient before making such calls. For example, in the U.S., the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) regulates robocalls and generally requires prior express written consent for autodialed or prerecorded telemarketing calls.
  2. Non-Commercial and Informational Robocall: Some non-commercial and informational robocalls are legal. For instance, calls for political campaigns, surveys, or information from government agencies may be exempt from certain restrictions.
  3. Emergency Alerts: Emergency and public safety robocalls are typically legal and are an important way to disseminate critical information in times of crisis.
  4. Scam and Fraudulent Robocalls: Fraudulent robocalls and scams are generally illegal in most jurisdictions. They are often used for illegal activities, such as attempting to defraud individuals or engaging in identity theft.
  5. Debt Collection and Service Notifications: Rules regarding robocalls related to debt collection and service notifications can vary by jurisdiction and may be subject to specific regulations.

It’s important to note that while certain types of robocalls are legal, they are still subject to regulations that govern when, how, and to whom they can be made. These regulations are designed to protect consumers from unwanted and potentially deceptive calls.

Many countries have regulatory bodies, such as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the United States, responsible for enforcing these rules and penalizing organizations that violate them.

If you receive robocalls that you believe are illegal or in violation of regulations, you should report them to the relevant regulatory authority or consumer protection agency in your country.

Additionally, you can take steps to protect yourself from unwanted robocalls by using call-blocking apps and services, registering your number on “Do Not Call” lists, and being cautious about sharing your phone number.

Help against Robocalls for Businesses

Advancements in technology and efforts by telecommunications companies have led to the development of tools and solutions to identify and block robocalls more effectively.

These technologies use algorithms and call databases to determine the likelihood that a call is spam or a robocall and automatically block or divert such calls.

It’s essential to remain vigilant and take steps to protect your privacy and security in the age of robocalls.

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