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FCC 'Robocall Strike Force' Has Work Cut Out: 29 Billion in 2016

Image: FCC 'Robocall Strike Force' Has Work Cut Out: 29 Billion in 2016
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By    |   Friday, 12 May 2017 10:49 AM

An FCC "robocall strike force" formed last year is under pressure to start making a dent in the 29 billion unwanted pre-recorded phone calls Americans received in 2016 – especially now that there's a new sheriff in the font office.

“We certainly want them to move as quickly as possible and as aggressively as possible," said the new chairman of the FCC, Ajit Pai, when asked by CBS News how close the agency is to finding a solution.

The FCC said there were 2.5 billion “dreaded” robocalls just last month, according to eOntarioNow.

The task force includes 33 telecom and tech companies that are each working to develop “a standard authentication technology to verify exactly where calls come from.”

That's right now the issue because the calls are subject to travel through many different networks, making them very difficult to trace.

"Some of it is difficult to do, because these are highly technical areas,” Pai said, per eOntario Now.

The problem also is the evolution of technology, considering how “easy and cheap” it is to send out robocalls, eOntario Now noted.

Peter Clarke is one of billions of people – it's probably safe to say – who would like to see something done about robocalls. He began receiving unknown voicemails with people yelling at him claiming that he had been calling them when he wasn’t.

“It’s frustrating. There’s literally nothing that you can do to prevent yourself from being a victim to this spoofing,” Clarke said.

The FCC has some advice:

If you do answer a call and are instructed to hit a button to stop receiving calls, just hang up. Don’t hit a button. It almost surely won’t help and could hurt you.

“Scammers often use these tricks to identify, and then target, live respondents,” the FCC said.

If you get a call that you believe is a scam, write down the phone number and file a complaint with the FCC.

Ask your phone company whether it offers a service to block robocalls.

“If not, encourage your provider to offer one,” the FCC said.

If you’ve responded to a “Can you hear me” call, watch your statements from your phone company, bank and credit card company.

Register all of your phone numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry.

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An FCC "robocall strike force" formed last year is under pressure to start making a dent in the 29 billion unwanted pre-recorded phone calls Americans received in 2016 – especially now that there's a new sheriff in the font office.
fcc, robocall, strike, force
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2017-49-12
Friday, 12 May 2017 10:49 AM
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