Attorneys General, Phone Companies Unite to Fight Illegal Robocalls

Attorney General Tim Fox today announced that as a result of a bipartisan, public/private coalition of all state attorneys general and 12 phone companies, eight principles have been adopted to fight illegal robocalls nationwide.

“This agreement will help protect consumers from illegal robocalls and make it easier for attorneys general to investigate and prosecute bad actors,” Attorney General Tim Fox said. “It will also allow us to address our country’s pervasive robocall problem in two key ways: prevention and enforcement. I hope all parts of the telecommunication industry will commit to implementing these principles swiftly and to working with state and federal authorities so people can answer their phones again without fear of being scammed.”

The principles offer a comprehensive set of best practices that recognizes that no single action or technology is sufficient to curb the scourge of illegal and unwanted robocalls.

Phone companies will work to prevent illegal robocalls by:
• Implementing call-blocking technology at the network level at no cost to customers;
• Making available to customers additional, free, easy-to-use call blocking and labeling tools;
• Implementing technology to authenticate that callers are coming from a valid source; and
• Monitoring their networks for robocall traffic.

Phone companies will assist attorneys’ general anti-robocall enforcement by:

• Knowing who their customers are, so bad actors can be identified and investigated;
• Investigating and taking action against suspicious callers – including notifying law enforcement and state attorneys general;
• Working with law enforcement, including state attorneys general, to trace the origins of illegal robocalls; and
• Requiring telephone companies with which they contract to cooperate in traceback identification.

Going forward, phone companies will stay in close communication with the coalition of attorneys general to continue to optimize robocall protections as technology and scammer techniques change.

The coalition of companies includes AT&T, Bandwidth, CenturyLink, Charter, Comcast, Consolidated, Frontier, Sprint, T-Mobile, US Cellular, Verizon, and Windstream.

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