Major legislation to fight robocalls passed by Senate, now heads to House

Local News

ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) — On Thursday afternoon, Sen. Charles Schumer announced the Senate passage of the TRACED Act.

This new legislation is designed to equip federal agencies with new tools and power to help stop robocalls.

Schumer’s office says that this year, people in the state have been hit with more than 1.2 billion robocalls, even at night.

Many of the calls appear to come from overseas, and some people are convinced that they should call the numbers back, leading to additional international fees on their phone bills.

“I’ve been beating the drum on the plague of robocalls for years now, because there’s very little more annoying to New Yorkers than being woken up in the dead of night by automated calls trying to scam them out of their hard-earned money. Today, the Senate has taken a major step forward in this fight by passing the TRACED Act. The TRACED Act, at long last, will arm the feds with new tools and authority to trace, prosecute and enforce fines against robocall scammers, as well as set new call authentication requirements designed to filter out robocalls—especially the ones abroad—before they reach the phones of unsuspecting New Yorkers. The TRACED Act is just what we need to hang up on these nonstop robocalls, and the House of Representatives should follow the Senate’s lead and pass it ASAP.” — Sen. Schumer

Here’s how it works. The TRACED Act would give the FCC the ability to fine the perpetrators of robocall schemes $10,000 per call. Also, it extends the timeframe in which the FCC can find and prosecute schemes from one to three years after a call is made.

In addition to this, the TRACED Act would make it so telecommunications companies have to implement effective call authentication technology, which would help stop robocalls from reaching peoples’ phones.

Now, Schumer says he’ll be calling on the House of Representatives to pass the legislation.

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