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Continued: Washington trying to cure robocall epidemic

  • Article by: ALEJANDRA MATOS , Star Tribune
  • Last update: December 14, 2013 - 6:23 PM

Nomorobo, created by Aaron Foss of New York, automatically disconnects potential robocalls using a “block list” derived from the Do Not Call List complaint database, robocall phone numbers identified by subscribers and phone numbers the company determines come from suspicious entities.

Robocallers will find a way

Both trade associations said in letters to McCaskill that the technologies would not work because the law prohibits mass call blocking and they believe the robocallers would find a way to get around the block lists. Legitimate robocalls, such as snow emergency alerts or school lockdown alerts, could be blocked with these two technologies.

As an alternative, the associations said they are working to develop a solution that “attacks” the IP networks where unsolicited robocalls originate. However, they said that it’s still in the development phase and that once that’s done, “it will require at least a two- to-three-year implementation timeline.”

On Dec. 4, McCaskill announced that she would be drafting legislation to permit the use of technologies like Nomorobo and the Telemarketing Guard after she “noted disappointment in the companies’ lack of interest in exploring innovative solutions to reduce the number of robocalls received by consumers.”

McCaskill’s office did not return phone calls seeking comment on the potential legislation.

While we wait to see what the federal government is going to do to put a stop to Rachel and her friends, John Frounfelter of Minneapolis has found a way to cope.

Frounfelter has filed 32 complaints with the Federal Communications Commission in the past year.

“It’s my new hobby,” he said.


Alejandra Matos • 612-673-4028 Twitter: @amatos12

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