Robo callers could soon be beaten with fines of up to $ 10,000 after the US Senate approved a new bill to combat spammers
- The anti-robocall law received almost unanimous support among American senators
- If it passed the House, it would set up an interdepartmental task force to tackle robocalls and impose heavy fines of up to $ 10,000 for repeated scammers.
- Is because Americans were plagued by 48 billion robocalls last year
The US Senate has approved a new law that can help spell the end of robocall misery.
With an almost unanimous vote, they voted to get the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act, which threatens to hit scammers with heavy fines for every robocall they make.
The move has been made because legislators, government agencies and consumer advocates have stepped up their calls to end the scourge of unwanted calls that hit millions of consumers every year.
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In an almost unanimous vote, senators voted in favor of the TRACED law, which threatens to hit scammers with heavy fines, sometimes as much as $ 10,000, for every robocall they make
ARE ROBOCALLS ON THE RISE?
A new report from the ID service Hiya discovered that Americans will receive no less than 26.3 billion spam calls in 2018.
That is an increase of 46 percent compared to 2017, when users registered around 18 billion robocalls.
In addition, many people in the US are receiving a flood of spam calls, making them increasingly opting not to answer the phone at all.
In his analysis, Hiya discovered that people received on average about 10 spam calls per month.
People received around 60 incoming calls from & # 39; unrecognized numbers or numbers that are not associated with a person in their contact list & # 39 ;.
The main area codes targeted by spam visitors in 2018 were Texas cities including Dallas, San Antonio, Austin and Fort Worth.
Of the spam calls received, most were & # 39; general spam & # 39; followed by fraud, telemarketers and robo callers.
Robocalls have become so common that a report from 2018 predicted that nearly 50 percent of all mobile calls this year will be scams.
Last year around 48 billion robocalls were placed just in the United States, which means an increase of almost 60 percent compared to 2017.
The bill was first introduced by Massachusetts Senators John Thune and Ed Markey in November.
In a publication describing the TRACED law, the senators said it was developed with the hope of giving regulators more ammunition to find scammers and increase the penalties for robocallers, as well as promoting call authentication and blocking adoption and blocking discussion around encourage the prosecution of robocallers.
& # 39; As the scourge of counterfeit calls and robocalls reaches epidemic levels, the two-party TRACED Act will provide every person with a phone that needs much needed relief & # 39 ;, Markey explained.
& # 39; It is a simple formula: call verification, blocking and enforcement, and this account reaches all three. & # 39;
With the passage in the Senate, the bill will now be assessed by the Second Chamber, where other anti-robocall measures are being considered.
It has also received the support of all 50 state attorneys general, the Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission and various consumer groups.
The bill would extend the status of restrictions, meaning that the FCC could take action for three years after being placed in robocalls instead of just one year.
TRACED would also set up an interdepartmental task force between the FCC, FTC, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to improve anti-robocall tactics and prosecute repeated scammers.
Earlier this month, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai introduced a new proposal that would allow telephone companies to eliminate unwanted & # 39; robocalls & # 39; by default in an effort to reduce the flow of unwanted calls.
In one-ring schemes & # 39; s, savvier scammers may use phone numbers that appear to be from the United States or a telephone speaker to mask the number that is being displayed on your device
Pai said that many service providers have refrained from developing and deploying standard call blocking tools due to uncertainty about whether the tools are legal under the FCC rules.
Allowing standard call blocking can significantly increase consumer development and acceptance of the tools, Pai said.
& # 39; By making clear that such call blocking is allowed, the FCC will provide voting service providers with the legal certainty they need to block unwanted calls from the outset, so consumers never have to get them & quot; & quot; Pai said .
The US telecommunications regulatory authority is expected to take action on Pai's proposal at its June 6 meeting.
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