robocalls

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Plagued by Robocalls? Help May Be Coming

The volume of calls is now at about 5B a month

(Newser) - New measures by US regulators could help thwart some of the billions of robocalls received across America. The FCC said Wednesday that it will vote in June on whether to let wireless carriers block spam calls by default, which should mean that more spam calls are blocked. Right now, customers... More »

Don't Return Robocalls, FCC Warns

Scam profits from toll charges

(Newser) - Returning a robocall can cost money. The FCC has warned consumers not to fall for a scam involving calls that ring once. The idea is to get people to call back, UPI reports, which can incur a toll charge like the one for calling a 900 number. That profits the... More »

Robocallers Get a Little Payback

FTC shuts down and fines 4 big operations

(Newser) - The FTC took a step this week in cracking down on the widespread—and annoying—problem of illegally spamming robocalls. The agency stopped and fined four prolific robospamming operations, which had been using automatic dialers to flood customers with billions of predatory calls, reports Gizmodo . The FTC announced that Higher... More »

John Oliver Robocalls FCC About Robocalls

HBO host hopes to get commissioners' attention about the problem

(Newser) - John Oliver cannot understand why the FCC won't stop illegal, spammy robocalls, and he unleashed some poetic justice on his HBO show Sunday night. His staff created its own robocall message and began robocalling all five FCC commissioners, including agency chief Ajit Pai, reports Deadline . (You can see the... More »

Report Confirms It: We Get a Lot of Robocalls

Americans got 26.3B of them last year, up from 18B in 2017

(Newser) - If it seems like you're getting a lot more robocalls than you used to—it's because you are, the Washington Post reports. A report released Tuesday by spam-monitoring service Hiya found that Americans received about 26.3 billion robocalls last year. That's an astonishing 46% increase from... More »

That's Not Oprah on Georgia's 'Racist' Robocalls

'Jesus don't like ugly,' former talk show host responds

(Newser) - Oprah Winfrey shared a final message to voters with hours to go before Election Day: "Jesus don't like ugly. And we know what to do about that: Vote." The video message via Instagram came in response to what Winfrey described as "racist robocalls in my name"... More »

Florida Gov's Race Just Hit New Racist Low

Anti-Gillum robocall backed by white supremacist group features jungle music, talk of mud huts

(Newser) - Ron DeSantis swears he meant nothing racist by his "monkey this up" comment, but a new robocall in the Florida gubernatorial race definitely did: Set to the background of jungle music and screeching monkeys, the New York Times reports that the minute-long audio clip begins with a man saying,... More »

How Robocallers Make Money Even When Calls Go Unanswered

It has to do with caller ID

(Newser) - Even if you ignore that annoying robocall, the person behind it might still be making money off the call. It has to do with caller ID services, as the Wall Street Journal explains in a look at the problem. When a call is made, phone companies query caller ID databases... More »

'Spoofing' Robocaller Fined $120M by FCC

It's the commission's biggest-ever fine

(Newser) - The Federal Communications Commission has slapped a notorious robocaller with a fine that works out to around $1.24—for each of roughly 97 million calls made over three months toward the end of 2016. The $120 million fine finalized against Adrian Abramovich Thursday is the biggest in FCC history... More »

'Anti-Semitic' Robocall Notes Roy Moore, Washington Post

'WaPo' denies involvement in bizarre scheme

(Newser) - An apparent robocall claiming to seek dirt on embattled Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore might actually be an attack against the newspaper that aired his dirty laundry. WKRG reports a pastor in Alabama received a voicemail Tuesday from a man claiming to be a Washington Post reporter looking for women... More »

Plug In Your Phone Number, See if Robocallers Owe You

Calls about a cruise could get you up to $900

(Newser) - It's the best kind of revenge against robocallers: money in your pocket. The Miami Herald reports that people who got a call about a cruise may be due $300 to $900 thanks to a class-action lawsuit. To find out if you're eligible, you can plug in your phone... More »

4M People Who Got Call From Huckabee Can Sue

Movie robocall allegedly violated do-not-call rules

(Newser) - A marketing stunt featuring former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee may prove costly for those behind a movie with a war-on-Christmas theme. The Daily Beast reports that a class-action suit has been filed on behalf of the approximately 4 million people who allegedly received a robocall from Huckabee to promote Last ... More »

Man Facing Largest-Ever FCC Fine Over 97M Robocalls

Company accused of duping people by using their own area codes

(Newser) - A man allegedly responsible for millions of illegal telemarketing robocalls may finally be getting his comeuppance in the form of the largest fine ever proposed by the FCC. The agency on Thursday accused Adrian Abramovich of making nearly 97 million robocalls promoting bogus travel deals over the course of three... More »

Bomb Threats Reported at Schools in 18 States

Robocalls believed to be 'swatting' hoaxes

(Newser) - Schools across the nation were hit by a wave of robocall bomb threats Monday, closing buildings and forcing the evacuation of thousands of students, USA Today reports. Elementary, middle, and high schools in at least 18 states were targeted, and security expert Ken Trump says the automated calls seem to... More »

Woman Gets $230K Over Endless Cable Robocalls

Time Warner wouldn't stop, even after she complained

(Newser) - It was surely annoying to Araceli King when Time Warner Cable called her again and again and again—153 times, to be exact—even after the Texas woman complained and asked the company to stop. Well, how's this for payback: A federal judge has just awarded her $229,500... More »

Why You're Still Plagued by Robocalls

And how to deal with them

(Newser) - Why do telemarketers keep pestering you, long after you signed up for the federal "Do Not Call" list? First of all, you're certainly not alone, Consumerist reports: "If this were a disease, it would be an epidemic," says a consumer advocate. The Federal Trade Commission gets... More »

Couple Wins $1M for 'Unrelenting' BofA Robocalls

Nelson and Joyce Coniglio say they got 700 calls over 4-year period

(Newser) - Nelson and Joyce Coniglio begged Bank of America to stop calling them about late loan payments, but the calls kept on coming: 700 of them over a four-year period, the Florida couple claims in a lawsuit that describes a huge mortgage-induced headache, ABC News reports. The bank was ordered by... More »

FTC Hangs Up on 'Rachel' Robocalls

Agency gets court to stop calls from fictional worker in 'cardholder services'

(Newser) - Poor Rachel. The FTC is clamping down on five telemarketing firms it says placed illegal robocalls, often claiming to be from a woman named "Rachel" who had an "important message" about high interest rates on credit cards, reports the Chicago Tribune . Yesterday, a federal court ordered a temporary... More »

Robocall Invents Bogus Obama-Netanyahu Debate

Creator laughs at criticism, promises more

(Newser) - Ah, the closing days of a tight, bitter election, when robocalls send fact-checkers' blood pressure through the roof. Case in point, one playing in swing states from the Emergency Committee for Israel that not only invents a debate between President Obama and Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu that never existed, but... More »

Complaints Surge Over Telemarketing

Illegal robocalls have customers fuming

(Newser) - Americans have had it up to here with telemarketers—particularly the robot variety. April saw 212,000 complaints about robocalls, up from just 65,000 in October 2010, the government says. Over the same span, complaints seeking a stop to telemarketers' calls rose from 71,000 to 182,000, the... More »

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