The Federal Communications Commission is cracking down on robocalls. Phone companies will now be required to block millions of calls a day from companies illegally marketing extended vehicle warranties.
Auto warranty robocalls were the biggest consumer complaint since 2020, according to an FCC report, followed by credit card and life insurance automated calls.
FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said, “We are not going to tolerate robocall scammers or those that help make their scams possible. Consumers are out of patience and I’m right there with them.”
The FCC Robocall Response Team announced Thursday that the mandate issued by the Enforcement Bureau orders U.S. voice companies to stop carrying traffic from “known robocall scam marketing auto warranties.”
Identified as coming from Roy Cox Jr., Aaron Michael Jones, their Sumco Panama companies, and international associates, over eight billion illegal pre-recorded communications have been attributed to the Cox/Jones/Sumco Panama operation.
Acting FCC Enforcement Bureau Chief Loyaan A. Egal asserts that the agency will be keeping a close eye on companies’ compliance with the order.
“Now that U.S. voice service providers know the individuals and entities associated with this scheme, the Enforcement Bureau will closely monitor voice service providers’ compliance with this order and take appropriate enforcement action as necessary,” Egal said.
With access to nearly half a million phone numbers in 200 different area codes, the robocalls appeared to be from “local” numbers.
By identifying the individuals and companies involved in the scam, the agency expects to have a better chance of stopping transmission of the unwanted solicitations.
The FCC investigation is related to an ongoing Enforcement Bureau probe and a lawsuit from the Ohio Attorney General.
Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost alleges that the defendants, “orchestrated an unlawful and complex robocall scheme, at times besieging consumers with more than 77 million robocalls a day to generate sales leads.”
Many of these call were about fraudulent car warranties.
Phone and voice companies that don’t comply with the Enforcement Bureau’s order could be held liable themselves the FCC has warned.
Read the FCC order here.
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