On December 30, President Trump signed a law to reduce Robocalls. The new law helps officials with identification of callers, tighten up penalties and and increase transparency.
What are Robocalls and how big is the problem?
Robocalls are defined as any call received with a recording, robot voice or any automatic dialing program. Robocalls have increased by 57% in 2018 to nearly 50 Billion calls and they are the #1 complaint to the FCC at 60% of all complaints. Next year nearly half of all mobile calls are estimated to be Robocalls (!). Here is a list of the biggest robocallers from December 2019.
I hate robocalls — what is anyone doing about the problem?
The FCC can (wait for it……) police Robocalls (yes we said it). We chuckle at the Commissioner’s quote on Robocalls as the “scourge of civilization”; but not much has been formally done to stop the calls and its tough to enforce the laws against the callers as many of them are overseas.
The new law may help as it allows for carriers to now be able to block these calls without first asking subscribers making prevention more broad. Additionally, carriers are required not to charge for these services. Here are some things being done with the new law.
This John Oliver take on Robocalls is long but it never gets old:
That’s not enough –how can i take matters into my own hands?
This is a great overview article on each carrier and what to do relating both to operating systems and carriers. But in summary:
If you have AT&T:
- The solution is called Call Protect
- Basic solution is free and provides: automatic fraud blocking and suspected spam call warnings.
- Sign into your ATT account and get information about the services and sign up here
If you have Verizon
- The solution is called Call Filter
- Basic solution is free and provides: free spam detection as well as high risk call blocking
- Sign into your VZW account and get information about the services and sign up here
If you have Sprint:
- The Solution is not a free robocall blocker currently
- Sprint does offer a Premium Caller ID feature is available for $2.99 per month and shows caller names even if they’re not one of your saved contacts. On some devices, it will automatically screen and block unwanted robocalls.
- You need to contact Sprint directly to initiate these options
If you have T-Mobile
- The solution is called Scam ID and Scam Block
- Basic solution is free and provides: Scam ID is enabled by default for all T-Mobile customers and flags potential spam with the text “Scam Likely” in the caller ID field. Scam Block blocks the calls right away instead of sending them through to your phone. **Note that Scam Block is an opt-in service.
- Sign into your T-Mobile account and get information about the services here
General FCC tips — these are relatively common sensical but here they are (meh)
Federal and State Do Not call Lists:
- Solution is: Sign up for the federal and state’s Do Not Call Lists
- Caveat: know that this list includes exceptions to robocalls such as Prescription Pickup Alerts and Tornado Warnings
- To sign up for the Federal Do Not Call list, go here.
- For general tips to avoid spoofing scams, click here to be connected to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Anyone receiving unwanted robocalls or encountering suspected scams of any variety is encouraged to file a consumer complaint with the Office of the Attorney General.
We here at Bill Police hope you are able to better Police these Robocalls and get it under control as we are still……
Protecting your Wireless Rights……