AG Cooper urges telephone companies to offer robocall blocking to customers

AG Cooper urges telephone companies to offer robocall blocking to customers

By / State News / الأربعاء, 29 تموز/يوليو 2015 04:00

RALEIGH, N.C. : July 22nd, 2015 - Telephone companies should be using FCC-approved technologies to block unwanted robocalls at the request of consumers, Attorney General Roy Cooper said Wednesday.
Today, Cooper joined 44 other state attorneys general in a letter calling on the chief executives of AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile and CenturyLink to offer their customers the ability to block unwanted calls. The attorneys general cited last month’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ruling that recognized call-blocking filters as legally appropriate if requested by consumers.
In the two weeks following the FCC’s June 18 ruling, Cooper’s Consumer Protection Division received approximately 150 calls from consumers who asked how they could block robocalls.
“Telemarketing scams and unwanted robocalls affect thousands of North Carolinians every year,” Cooper said.  “It’s time for telephone companies to address consumers’ concerns by putting a stop to these intrusive phone calls.”
Phone carriers previously claimed that using available technologies like NoMoRobo and Call Control on behalf of their customers would be in violation of a federal law. Last year, Cooper and 38 additional attorneys general asked the FCC to allow phone companies to utilize call-blocking filters. Although the FCC voted last month to lift the barrier on call-blocking technology, the telecommunications companies addressed in the joint letter have not yet begun offering call-blocking services to customers.
Last year, Cooper’s office received 5,254 complaints from North Carolina consumers about unwanted calls, including complaints from consumers who had already joined the nationwide Do Not Call Registry. Illegitimate companies frequently use robocalling to steal money and personal information from consumers, Cooper said. Robocalls have been used in IRS imposter scams, computer repair scams, and fake sales scams pitching home security and medical alert systems. “Since call-blocking options already exist… landline and wireless carriers should move swiftly to implement and inform consumers of these options,” the attorneys general wrote to the phone
companies. “Your organizations are now poised to offer your customers the help they need. We urge you to act without delay.” Along with North Carolina, the following other states and territories signed the letter to the telecommunications companies: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Source: North Carolina Department of Justice.

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