Do you hate illegal robocalls? If you do, it's a joyful day today – the U.S. Senate voted unanimously to approve the law on the enforcement and deterrence of telephone robocall abuse (TRACED Act), the Wall Street Journal reported today.
The groundbreaking bill increases the potential penalty for any illegal robocall from $ 1,500 to $ 10,000 and the time it takes the FCC to investigate from one year to three years. The FCC must notify Congress of the effectiveness of the call authentication framework within three years of the law coming into force. The agency must then submit additional reports to the congress every three years.
For airlines, the TRACED law prescribes outfits such as AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile in order to implement the STIR / SHAKEN framework in their networks. The framework enables a network operator to confirm a call and ensure that it comes from an authentic source. In addition, airlines cannot charge their customers an additional fee for their Robocall blocking services.
Also read: How to block spam calls on your Android phone
The TRACED Act was enforced in the US House of Representatives in early December. After the Senate approved the bill, President Donald Trump's signature was enough to turn it into law. According to representative Mike Doyle (D-PA), the bill is likely to be "included in the law next week or so."
As promising as the TRACED law is, it is not without its flaws. As Consumer Reports noted today, the final version of the draft law did not contain a mandate to clarify the requirements in the House version for consumer consent. In addition, smaller network operators have not yet upgraded their networks to support the STIR / SHAKEN framework. Such an upgrade could be expensive, as many land operators still use older analog technology.
It is even more important that the TRACED law does not apply to foreign robocallers. The bill targets US robocallers, but close coordination between the US and other governments is still required to target international robocallers.
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