FCC and Louisiana lawmakers push legislation targeting robocallers

Lawmakers and FCC working to stop robocalls

BATON ROUGE, LA (WVUE) - Lawmakers and the Federal Communications Commission are working to fight robocalls.

"I deal with it often. All during the day," Tyronne Aubert said.

“I mean, it’s actually a lot of people, more than just me. Like, my friend, everybody that I know is getting random calls from people that they, people that they can’t even give you a name,” Monica Washington said.

Unwanted calls are affecting almost everyone--even Louisiana Congressman Garret Graves, who’s now pushing two bills on Capitol Hill to try to address the growing problem.

"There has been this explosion or proliferation of these spamming phone calls or spoofing phone calls. As a matter of fact, I apparently called myself one time," Graves said.

One of his bills would allow for so called "good hackers" to receive a bounty for tracking down the culprits behind robocalls.

“They’ve proven that they have been capable in some instances of identifying who the bad actors are. So let’s incentivize them. That the government can’t do it, let this army of good Samaritans do it,” Graves said.

However, many of these calls come from out of the country, so one cyber security expert said it’s unclear how fines would be enforced.

"If you find out where they are, what are they going to do?" Nam Nguyen said.

The second bill would combine resources from the federal agencies involved in fighting the problem to come up with recommendations.

"I think they should go after the phone companies, and get the phone companies to do more," Nguyen said.

The FCC Chairman announced phone carriers are now authorized to block calls from spoofed numbers.

"I think it's great. I think it needs to because we get all these different people calling and it's annoying," Aubert said.

Congressman Graves said he’s working on getting more cosponsors on the bill, while seeing what telecommunications companies and the Federal Trade Commission can do under the current law.

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