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Attorney General William Tong


Attorney General Tong Calls for Faster Implementation of Anti Robocall Technology

Urges the FCC to Accelerate Deadline for STIR/SHAKEN Adoption

(Hartford, CT) -- Attorney General William Tong today urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to fight back against the scourge of illegal robocalls by moving up the deadline for smaller telephone companies to implement caller ID technology.

“If you’ve noticed lately that your phone is screening spam calls from fake phone numbers, that’s STIR/SHAKEN in action. It’s not a perfect solution, but it is helping slow down the onslaught of these obnoxious robocalls. While major carriers were required to adopt this technology by June 2021, smaller companies still have another two years to act. Unfortunately, in some instances these are the same companies responsible for originating disproportionate numbers of illegal robocalls. These calls are not just annoying, they can lead to real financial harm. The FCC can and must act now to move up this deadline and protect families from these incessant and intrusive scammers,” said Attorney General Tong.

Under the TRACED Act, which became law in 2019, phone companies are required to implement STIR/SHAKEN technology on their networks. This caller ID authentication technology helps ensure that telephone calls are originating from verified numbers, not spoofed sources. Large companies were required to implement the technology by June 2021, and smaller phone companies were given an extension until June 2023.

However, some of the same smaller phone companies that are benefitting from this extension are also responsible for originating or facilitating high volumes of illegal robocalls that spam Americans and lead to financial or personal data loss. And without the STIR/SHAKEN technology in place, these smaller companies are failing to take a necessary step to minimize the continued onslaught of illegally spoofed robocalls that harm residents.

The coalition of attorneys general are asking the FCC to require these companies to implement the STIR/SHAKEN technology as soon as possible and no later than June 30, 2022.

Attorney General Tong is joined in submitting today’s comments by the Attorneys General of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

The bipartisan coalition of 51 attorneys general was led by Attorney General Josh Stein (NC), Attorney General Josh Shapiro (PA), and Attorney General Leslie Rutledge (AR).

A copy of the comments is available here.
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