Attorney General Mark R. Herring urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to fight back against the scourge of illegal robocalls by moving up the deadline for smaller telephone companies to implement caller ID technology. Attorney General Herring joined a bipartisan coalition of 51 attorneys general have in submitting comments to the FCC.
“Virginians continue to be plagued by illegal robocalls that are not only annoying but can also potentially scam consumers out of hundreds or even thousands of dollars,” said Herring. “This technology has proven to be effective in reducing the number of robocalls that consumers receive, which is why I am calling on the FCC to move up the implementation date for smaller phone companies. My colleagues and I have worked tirelessly to put a stop to these annoying and illegal robocalls and protect consumers, but it’s imperative that tech companies do their part as well.”
Under the TRACED Act, which became law in 2019, phone companies are required to implement STIR/SHAKEN technology on their networks. This caller ID authentication technology helps ensure that telephone calls are originating from verified numbers, not spoofed sources. Large companies were required to implement the technology by June 2021, and smaller phone companies were given an extension until June 2023.
However, some of the same smaller phone companies that are benefitting from this extension are also responsible for originating or facilitating high volumes of illegal robocalls that spam Americans and lead to financial or personal data loss. And without the STIR/SHAKEN technology in place, these smaller companies are failing to take a necessary step to minimize the continued onslaught of illegally spoofed robocalls that harm residents.
Herring and his colleagues are asking the FCC to require these companies to implement the STIR/SHAKEN technology as soon as possible and no later than June 30, 2022.
Joining Herring are the attorneys general of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.