June 21, 2021—The Federal Communications Commission has voted in an amendment Thursday to make it easier for people to submit complaints about suspected robocalls and call spoofing directly to the agency’s enforcement bureau.
Section 10(a) of the Traced Act, which is the agency’s tool to fight unlawful robocalls and spoofed caller ID, was enacted in a vote by the FCC and creates an online portal on the FCC website for individuals to submit information suspicious calls and texts.
The FCC will ask the complainant to provide information as to what ID information is displayed, the phone number, date, time, the complainant’s service provider and description of call or text.
“The new online portal will allow such entitles to alert agency investigators of concerning incidents, including floods of robocalls like those that have been known to clog up hospital lines,” according to an FCC news release.
The portal requires approval from the Office of Management and Budget before it takes effect, which is expected within 30 days.
Congress ordered the agency to develop a streamlined process for private entities about unlawful spoof calling and robocalls.
Commentators suggested that the FCC consolidate the new portal and existing complaint process to better distinguish the two.
With these concerns, the FCC has decided to adopt the SAFE Credit Union’s suggestion to include language that explains its use and helps distinguish the portal from the existing informal consumer complaint process.
The FCC stated in a report that timely and thorough information from private entities is crucial to mitigate robocall incidents and help bring swift enforcement.