Press Releases

Attorney General William Tong



After 47.8 billion robocalls were made in the U.S. in 2018, Attorney General William Tong joined a bipartisan coalition of 42 attorneys general in a comment letter supporting the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) proposed rules to improve and expand the prohibition on "caller ID" spoofing."

This tactic used by scammers manipulates caller ID information to fool consumers about the name and number of the party that is calling them.

The proposed rules would expand the reach of existing law to allow the FCC to combat caller ID spoofing from scammers outside the U.S., as well as caller ID spoofing using alternative voice and text messaging services. The proposed rules would also broaden the authority of the FCC to hold these scammers accountable and stamp out malicious caller ID spoofing.

"Incessant calls from fake phone numbers are not only a nuisance, but they often lead to identity theft and cause billions of dollars in harm to consumers' checkbooks and the economy. We need to do everything we can to eliminate these calls to protect consumers and their personal information. By updating federal law to allow enforcement against scams from outside the U.S. and ones that use text messaging, we can better combat the increased number of robocalls," said Attorney General Tong.

In the letter, the coalition encourages the FCC to adopt the rules and offer support for enforcement. The group points to the increased number of robocall scams: of the 47.8 billion robocalls made in the U.S. in 2018, 17.7 billion of the calls were reported to be scams resulting in consumer losses of $488 million.

In the letter, the coalition also encourages the FCC to adopt and implement new technology solutions to prevent and block these robocalls from occurring.

In filing the letter, Attorney General Tong joins the attorneys general of Pennsylvania, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia.

A copy of the letter is available here.

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