FCC Makes Another Valiant Effort To Stop Relentless And Annoying Robocalls

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There's a high chance that you've recently received a call marked as “Possible Spam” from your phone provider. You may have even received a call that appears to have originated from your area code and then realized after answering that you were the latest victim of a robocall. This still occurs even after placing your phone number on the national Do Not Call list. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is now taking aim at attempting to [hopefully] end those types of calls once and for all.

The FCC stated this week that it has proposed rules that are aimed at ensuring “networks that serve as entry points for foreign-originated phone calls do their part to prevent this traffic from including robocalls.” Stopping robocalls originating from abroad is perhaps the most difficult challenge the FCC faces due to how hard it is to reach foreign-based robocallers and the foreign voice service providers from which the calls originate.

The FCC is looking to impose new requirements on domestic gateway providers. This would include mandating telecoms block traffic that have neither certified or implemented Secure Telephone Identity Revisited (STIR)/ Signature-based Handling of Asserted Information Using toKENs (SHAKEN). By implanting STIR/SHAKEN framework, the effectiveness of illegal spoofing is reduced. This will also aid law enforcement in identifying those making the calls and improve the voice service providers’ ability to block robocalls before they reach your phone.

During the past year, the FCC has made several other steps in attempting to end all those pesky robocalls. It issued the largest fine in FCC history for spoof violations against a telemarketer and encouraged certain gateway providers to end their use of robocall campaigns found on their network. The FCC has improved coordination between agencies and other nations as well and recognizes this remains a complex problem and will remain a high priority issue to tackle.

While it is unlikely that these newest steps will end robocalls altogether, it is at least a step in the right direction. How often do you receive spam/robocalls? Do you have confidence that these newest steps by the FCC will have an impact on that number of unwanted calls you receive? Let us know in the comments below.