Feeds

FCC waves big fines at political robocallers

Stop mobile spam or face $16,000-per-call bill

The Power of One Infographic

The US Federal Communications Commission has cited two robocalling operations used for political calls and says the companies have 15 days to stop or they will get fined $4.8m and/or $16,000 per call.

"Consumers have increasingly been sounding the alarm on robocalls, rightly complaining about unwanted, intrusive cell phone calls and text messages from strangers, or worse yet computers," said Michele Ellison, chief of the FCC's enforcement bureau said in a statement. "These citations set the stage for significant monetary penalties if violations continue,"

The two operations, Dialing Services (which was acting for the Republicans) and Richard Gilmore's company, Democratic Dialing (guess who they work for?), have been investigated by the FCC since last year, and the FCC has now put the hammer down. If they carry on spamming calls, the agency warns it will shut them down.

US politicians splashed out over $6bn in last year's election cycle, and robocalls made up a reasonable – and highly annoying - proportion of that. In the case of these companies, the FCC is particularly ticked off because they targeted mobile-phone users.

Robocalls are allowed to contact mobile phones but only in an emergency situation, such as a hurricane or earthquake. Furthermore, the FCC's checks showed that none of the recipients had given their prior consent to being called.

The FCC has been cracking the whip on robocallers of late. It's currently offering $50,000 in prizes to people who can come up with a way to safely block the practice, and it shut down five operations in the last year. ®

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
MPs wave through Blighty's 'EMERGENCY' surveillance laws
Only 49 politcos voted against DRIP bill
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.