Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III, along with the State Attorneys General Robocall Working Group, wants the FCC to continue to collaborate with state attorneys general and telecom companies to trace illegal robocalls to their source.
Slatery announced this in a press release this week.
Under the TRACED Act, which became law in December 2019, the FCC will select a single registered association to manage the tracing of illegal robocalls. Traceback investigations are necessary for law enforcement to efficiently identify and investigate illegal robocallers and expose voice service providers that assist them, the press release said.
“These investigations are particularly important right now because of robocall scams related to COVID-19,” Slatery said in the press release.
Tennessee, since 2018, is a member of a coalition of 45 states working with the telecom industry.
According to the National Association of Attorneys General, state attorneys general have long led in the fight against illegal robocallers “and their assault on the American people’s privacy.”
“As a result of the rise of caller ID spoofing, there is limited visibility of the entities and individuals that perpetrate these harassing and unlawful calls. State Attorneys General have prioritized tracking down these bad actors and bringing their illegal activity to light,” the NAAG said.
As The Tennessee Star reported, more than 48 billion robocalls were made in 2018, making them the number one source of consumer complaints to the FTC and the FCC and resulting in millions in consumer losses, according to information Slatery put out at the time.
In 2017, consumers reported losses in excess of $290 million as a result of frauds perpetrated by telemarketers. Consumers Union reported that telemarketing scams have been a $9.5 billion cost to the U.S. economy, Slatery said that year.
Slatery is joined in submitting these comments by the Attorneys General of Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
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