Ashley Moody leads effort to stop robocallers from abusing phone numbers

by | Nov 16, 2021

 

Attorney General Ashley Moody is taking the next step in the fight to safeguard Floridians from the recent scourge of illegal robocalls

On Tuesday, Moody announced continued efforts to fight illegal robocalls from scamming consumers. Leading a letter of support from attorneys general nationwide, Moody called on the Federal Communications Commission‘s (FCC) to implement stricter processes on companies to help curtail spoof calls. In particular, Moody noted that bad actors are exploiting legitimate phone numbers to circumvent previously implemented anti-robocall technology.

Moody is joined by 50 attorneys general in submitting the letter.

“Working with the FCC, we have been successful in reducing the number of scam robocalls targeting Americans. Unfortunately, in recent months, scammers have found ways to circumvent the technology created to protect our citizens from fraudulent robocall messages. Today, I asked the FCC to continue its efforts to reduce the number of calls by implementing stricter processes on companies that assign and distribute telephone numbers,” Moody said in a press release.

Earlier this year, attorneys general across the country cracked down on the growing telecom pandemic, working alongside phone companies to implement a technology program called STIR/SHAKEN. The technology thwarts the ability of callers to illegally veil a caller ID by checking to see if a phone call comes from a legitimate source before the designated phone begins to ring. Since the FCC required large phone companies to begin using this technology in June, scam robocalls have dropped nearly 30 percent.

Despite the progress, Moody added that scammers are looking for new ways to circumvent the STIR/SHAKEN program by purchasing access to legitimate phone numbers to conceal their identities. Scammers are able to bypass the security measures by purchasing access to legitimate phone numbers from companies that do not have strong know-your-customer policies. In the letter, the bipartisan coalition cites the need to constrain the rampant misuse of legitimate numbers by requiring phone companies to verify customers’ identities to help keep the numbers from being sold, leased or rented to scammers for illegal robocall purposes.

To view a copy of the letter, click here.

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