Bradley attorney Andrew Narod was featured in a two-part series with Local ABC 24 in Memphis on the difficulty of cracking down on robocalls. Robocalls are the number one source of complaint to the FTC and FCC, and those in the Mid-South are among the worst hit. Reports show more than 4 billion robocalls were placed in April 2021.
“It’s frustrating that we don’t have harsher penalties or better abilities to identify calls," said Narod.
He said there’s a reason cracking down on the calls and texts isn’t easy.
"So we wind up having people that make these telephone calls from other countries, and you can’t track them. You can’t enforce certain laws such as the TRACED Act or the Telephone Consumer Protection Act in order to stop them from doing illegal things," said Narod.
In 2019, the House passed legislation that would create tougher laws and penalties for robocalls, and President Trump signed the bipartisan TRACED Act into law last year. Both measures are similar - using tools and giving power to agencies to stop the calls.
“It’s at least an effort by the government to do what it can," said Narod.
He outlined a series of new efforts, including:
- The TRACED Act's one-ring scam rules went into effect back in February.
- The FCC Caller ID authentication will go into effect in June.
- Fines will increase for robocalls from $1500 to $10,000 per call.
- The law requires the FCC to develop a system to inform you when you receive a spoofed or spam call.
“It’s hard to enforce internationally and remote parts of the world, and so you wind up having people making those telephone calls from other countries, and you can’t track them," explained Narod.
Part one of the series, "'I Hate Picking Up the Phone' | Telemarketers and Scammers Target the Mid-South With Millions of Robocalls," appeared on Local ABC 24 on May 10, 2021.
Part two, "We Activated a New Cellphone: The Robocalls and Texts Started Within Hours," appeared on Local ABC 24 on May 12, 2021.