FCC votes to ban caller ID spoofing in text messages, international calls

WASHINGTON – The Federal Communications Commission is working to crack down on scam artists.

On Thursday, the Federal Communications Commission voted to implement rules to ban malicious caller ID spoofing of text messages and international calls.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai originally proposed the rules in July following a bipartisan statement from more than 42 attorneys general.

“Scammers often robocall us from overseas, and when they do, they typically spoof their numbers to try and trick consumers,” said Chairman Pai.  “Call center fraudsters often pretend to be calling from trusted organizations and use pressure tactics to steal from Americans.  We must attack this problem with every tool we have.  With these new rules, we’ll close the loopholes that hamstring law enforcement when they try to pursue international scammers and scammers using text messaging.”

The new rules amend the Truth in Caller ID Act of 2009 by implementing federal legislation passed in 2018 that makes spoofing from international call center and text messages illegal.

During our recent meeting, Chairman Pai said his top consumer protection priority was combatting unlawful robocalls and caller ID spoofing,” Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter said. “Thanks to his leadership and action taken by the FCC, progress is being made in our fight to combat these crimes that are causing real harm to Americans. These latest measures will close loopholes in the Truth in Caller ID Act and give law enforcement the ability to go after the criminals who are preying on consumers. My office remains dedicated to assisting our federal partners on this front to end these scams and better protect Oklahomans.”

The FCC received more than 35,000 complaints about caller ID spoofing in the first six months of 2019.

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