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The FTC keeps attacking robocalls

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Have you noticed lately that you’re getting fewer robocalls?  Yes, way too many calls are still coming, and we’re fully engaged on that issue. But we’re seeing some promising developments. Some recent FTC actions might just have something to do with that. Let’s review. In December 2019, the FTC filed suit against VoIP service provider Globex Telecom for helping scammers run a “reduce your credit card interest rate” con. In January, the FTC sent letters to 19 VoIP providers, warning them that consumer protection laws apply to them, too, and pointing out what could happen if they kept helping scammy telemarketers break the law. Then, just last week, the agency sent nine warning letters to VoIP providers that were helping Coronavirus scammers blast out robocalls during the current health crisis. The VoIP providers that straightened up accounted for billions of calls that we’re all now not getting.

But today, the FTC announced still more warning letters  – this time, bringing partners from the FCC along to double down on enforcement. Three VoIP providers got the warning letters this time, but there’s a twist. This time, the two agencies also sent a letter to US Telecom — the industry’s trade association — that identifies the entities transmitted the illegal robocalls, and, if they haven’t cut it out in 48 hours, says the FCC will authorize providers to block traffic from them. So: either way, two days from now, there should be still fewer illegal robocalls trying to rip people off.

But back to the smaller number of robocalls we’re getting now. It’s actually more than a feeling, as FTC Do Not Call Registry data released today shows. If you check out the data, you’ll see that Do Not Call reports in December 2019 — right after the FTC’s Globex lawsuit — dropped by a whopping 25%, compared to December 2018. (That drop would be even greater except for the government shut-down in 2018 – in fact, calculating the drop based on complaints per day says there was a 32% drop.) And after the January round of VOIP warning letters, reports in February 2020 were more than 30% lower than the previous year. And March of 2020 had 53% fewer robocall reports than March of 2019. So: the FTC lays down the law to a bunch of VoIP providers…and reports of calls drop precipitously. Coincidence? You be the judge. 

Nobody’s taking a full victory lap, because the fight goes on. We know you’re still getting calls. And though there’s a dent in the numbers, the FTC and its partner agencies won’t relent until we’ve won this battle.

Comments

THANK YOU FTC!!! FINALLY, maybe we will get OUR phones back the way they SHOULD be??!! I have been SO SICK of those Robo calls for 2 years already. It will be NICE to have some peace & quiet around here. My phone was ringing at LEAST 15 times a day with those dang Robos.

I’m getting just as many if not more.

thank you!!! now the start of text message.

Not only a drop in robo calls, but a drop in ALL calls since the Corona virus shut down. I will wait to see the success on this effort to stop robo calls after the "all clear" is given from the pandemic.

If there's been a drop in R-calls, it's barely noticeable. I still get 10 to 20 a week

I get numerous robo calls daily from multiple numbers. I’m looking forward to when mine goes down!

why do i still get them

Can't thank you enough!! Keep up the good work!

Don't pat your self on the back to hard (FTC) because the reduction is more from people stoppedestrians reporting as I did over a year ago. It made no differance and then I realized the spamers started using random phones of innocent individuals or number that looked similar to your own. At that point it was useless to report them.

Warning letters repeatedly......Really? They need to be fined or arrested, after all, isn’t theft a crime? Or does that just apply to the average person....

thank you for the powers within

Thanks it must be helping some because I don't have
as many on my computer as I did. The phone is getting
a lot better also. Keep up the good work

Thank you FTC! I have noticed less robocalls lately. Keep up the good work!!

Definitely fewer calls. Thank you.

I have definitely noticed a reduction in these annoying calls and am SO grateful! Thank you FTC!!!

Many thanks to those who are stopping those robo calls.. Friday I got 1 call only.. It was an 800 number. Funny thing tho..went to check the voicemail and it was in Chinese :)))

I still get calls everyday, even on Sunday! They take no breaks..

We receive robocalls every single day. They keep changing the number but the message is the same. Block a number and still receive calls. They want to give me an update on my student loan...LOL...I'm 64! I don't have a student loan. Also get text messages. It's just crazy.

Yahoo for the Red, White and Blue ! Thank You FCC and FTC we all LOVE you !

I have noticed there are less calls now. You know what's weird though? Back when the federal government was shut down for approx. 2-3 weeks. I did not receive any of these calls. Not one!

You guys/gals are the BEST. I can only imagine how hard the job is to fight the ROBO calls. But, you are doing it. THANK YOU SO MUCH. In the past several weeks, I had maybe 10 calls, what a blessing. Blessing to all and be safe.

Thank you so much. These phonecalls were even runging during my sleeping hours and early mornings.

Thank you all for all your hard work taking care of the problem. My husband had been getting 20 - 30 of these calls a day! They have greatly reduced over the past few weeks. He will still get 2- 3 per week, but not every day! So , let me say how much you are appreciated!

I get them daily, my phone is blocking some. Also Medicare or disability help, which I've never asked for. I'm tired of turning them in..probably why you are the drop...add the spam filter

I get them daily, my phone is blocking some. Also Medicare or disability help, which I've never asked for. I'm tired of turning them in..probably why you are the drop...add the spam filter

Indeed, I've experienced a dramatic drop as well as caller id indicating "scam"

I have noticed I am getting fewer Robocalls, although today is Saturday.

Dear Lois,
Thank you to you and your staff for fighting the robocalls. Getting rid of robocalls helps to protect the vulnerable elderly who, with abilities reduced by dementia, can so easily fall victim to scammers. I am sure anyone of all ages are relieved to be rid of so many robocalls. Thank you for your tireless fight. We appreciate your hard work and the reduced calls.

I have an answering machine which screens all my calls. I have noticed less, but thought it was because of the virus closing telemarketers' centers. Hope this is permanent. So many scammers trying to steal info.

We have noticed a reduction, and we're extremely grateful for all of you at the FTC. Please keep the pressure on! At least there's one government agency doing their job.

Yay! I noticed my phone had not been ringing off the hook with these robocalls for awhile, but with this pandemic I zoned out on the bogus callers. plus I simply stopped answering the phone and just let it ring. of course I set my ringer to 2 rings and when I can I select the block caller button.. but yes yay FTC thank you!!!!!!

as DAN posted: When is the FTC going to start going after the people pushing the extended car warranties? I get those all the time on my cell phone now.... really these need to stop...

yes, at this time i'm getting less robo calls. thank you.

I DID receive calls about how to reduce my credit card bills. They make it very enticing, but I recognized that it was a scam right away because I don't have any credit cards.

my phone had been hijacked by telemarketers and robocalls, even though i am on the do not call registry. i had to stop answering my phone altogether if it was not one of my contacts. i am happy to know that maybe i can start to pick up. i have been missing calls from church members and others that i really should be responding to. so happy to see steps being taken to eliminate this problem.

Yes, I've noticed a significant reduction in Robo-calls in the last month. Thank you FTC for your efforts in this regard. Please keep up the good work.

Thank you for all that you do, i thought about how to sue those robocalls about the interest rate etc. keep up the great work!! i have had none of those since last week ,so thank you, stay safe!

YES! I did notice and drew my husband's attention to it! I rarely get them but he was going crazy trying to get anything done there for a few weeks! Thank you! Now for the junk mail!!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you! Those foreign language calls were really getting me annoyed and I was feeling helpless because the numbers kept changing.

Yes, I have noticed a big drop in pesky robo calls. I thought maybe the coronavirus had something to do with that. Thank you!

Nice job! I've noticed fewer calls that I have to ignore because I don't recognize the number (those are always scams!). My 90-year-old mother, who uses a landline, isn't getting as many either. Keep up the good work!

I did notice our phone has been relatively quiet recently. Thanks for the effort. Greatly appreciate not receiving 4-8 annoying nuisance calls nearly ever day. It's a relief. Keep up the good work. Thank you!!!

I get very few calls now except the computer tech keeps calling day after day, talking about repairs to my computer and I just curse them out and then hang up. I did speak to a tech two years ago and they wanted to charge me $299.00 to clean out my computer, I told him that all they do is scamming people and I hung up and the jerk had the nerve to call back. So I recognized the phone number and when that number pops up on my phone, I do not answer. Thanks FTC and FCC.

Thank you sooo much. being a lady in her 80's, it's been so wonderful not to get so many. With all that's going on in our country, it's wonderful to know this is one less thing to worry about. God bless you

I had so many calls insisting they will pay cash for my home I had to change the message to My house is not for sale and I have insurance.

I STILL HAVE A LIST OF DOZENS OF CALLS FROM JAN THROUGH RIGHT NOW. IT STARTED TAPERING OFF THE END OF MARCH. THANKS!!!

Robo calls have dropped to 3/week. Thanks so much.

Still getting calls.

I have noticed a lot less robocalls, thank you! I'm still getting the ones talking about my vehicle's warranty (and with two brand new vehicles in the house, I automatically realize it's a scammer!) and also in the last few days a couple having to do with lowering the interest rate on my credit card. I've been simply ending the call and reporting the number to Nomorobo. I do agree with the commenter who mentioned they're now using text messages to get you on your cell phone. Seems like it never ends!

I am receiving fewer robocalls. However, now I am receiving text messages. What can I do?

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