The House of Representatives passed a new bill Wednesday calling for tougher penalties on “robocalling” operations. This means that carriers would need to put technology in place to ensure phone calls are authentic.
The legislation also would allow the Federal Communications Commission to fine illegal robocallers $10,000 per violation. When you think about the potential quantity of calls made, that figure could add up quickly!
“We’re proud of the strong support our bipartisan Stopping Bad Robocalls Act received this afternoon and look forward to working with our colleagues in the Senate to produce a bill that the President can sign into law,” the four leading sponsors of the House bill said.
A major problem
Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone Jr. said robocalls, “started as a nuisance, but now threatens the way consumers view and use their telephones.” According to some estimates, there were upward of 48 billion robotcalls made in 2018 alone. That’s a 50% increase from the previous year.
The “Stopping Bad Robocalls Act” law was passed in a 429-3 vote. This came after it was unanimously approved by the Energy and Commerce Committee last week. It is similar in nature to a “Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act” passed by the Senate earlier this year.
Despite how much everyone hates robocalls, efforts to pass anti-robocall legislation have frequently stalled. Hopefully the passing of laws in the Senate and House bodes well. That should vastly increase the likelihood that Congress will get a bill to the White House to sign before 2020.
We’ll keep following this story until — with any luck — we reach the point that this is signed into law.
Source: The Hill