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FCC Issues Annual Report on Robocalls

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released its annual report to Congress detailing consumer complaints and enforcement action in connection with illegal robocalls.

Released at the end of December, the report offers insight into trends related to informal consumer complaints regarding robocalls that were received by the Commission over five full calendar years, from 2018-2022, as well as complaint data and information about enforcement actions through November 2023.

Over the nearly six-year period covered in this report, the FCC received a total of 1,341,635 informal consumer complaints under four different provisions of the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (TRACED Act). The largest number of complaints filed (312,225, or 42%) were for violations of the FCC’s restrictions on sales calls made to residential telephone numbers (section 227(c)), while an additional 289,061 (21.5%) were filed for providing misleading or inaccurate caller identification information (section 227(e))

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The report also indicates that the FCC’s stepped-up enforcement efforts over the past several years are having a positive impact in reducing the number of informal consumer complaints. After a record 333,146 informal complaints filed in 2018, annual informal complaint numbers have generally seen marked declines, with just 169,465 informal complaints filed in 2022, and only 125,586 complaints filed in 2023 through the end of November.

As evidence of those stepped-up enforcement efforts, the FCC’s report provides details on three separate Notices of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture issued in 2022, with total proposed fines of over $461 million. Two of those cases resulted in Forfeiture Orders issued by the Commission in 2023, amounting to more than $416 million in penalties.

Read the text of the FCC’s Annual Report on robocalls.

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