Apple and other tech giants join forces with FCC to crack down on spammy robocalls

By , Aug 19, 2016

WWDC 2016 slides Phone spam call

Robocalls, phone calls that uses a computerized autodialer to deliver a pre-recorded message, may become a thing of the past as Apple, Google and other Silicon Valley giants join forces with the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to crack down on spammy automated phone calls, according to Reuters this morning.

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson is expected to make the announcement at the first “Robocall Strike Force” meeting at the FCC later today.

The companies, which include Apple, Google, AT&T, Comcast and 30 other technology giants, are expected to draft plans to accelerate the development and adoption of new tools and solutions to crack down on robocalls by October 19, Reuters said.

FCC wrote in last month’s letter to phone and tech companies that pesky robocalls from political parties and telemarketers are at the top of the consumer complaints list.

AT&T CEO has agreed to work with other relevant companies on the adoption of new tools and solutions to “abate the proliferation of robocalls” and to make recommendations to the FCC on the role government can play in this battle.

For years, AT&T has been using black-listing software like Nomorobo to block unwanted calls. The FCC itself mandates that companies obtain consent from people before inundating them with robocalls. It also maintains a national Do Not Call list that anyone can put their number on to prevent unwanted calls, texts and faxes from telemarketers.

Apple has already created its own solutions to help fight the phone spam issue. Among other iOS 10 features, the extensible stock Phone app lets users install third-party apps which can provide information automatically if the incoming call is a possible spam, right on the Lock screen.

Source: Reuters

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  • 2008crna

    I really wish such measures to block robocalls was available in iOS 9.3.3 jailbreaks. I can’t explain it but it enfuriates me when I hear a recorded voice in a call I pick up. Telling me “Obama has instituted a new opportunity for homeowners….” Or “This is Amanda with the vehicle warranty department…” Somehow I have gotten a lot more calls lately and I haven’t changed my calling habits. Apparently the Do Not Call list is just a lead list for robo telemarketers.

    • Tim Myxa

      i use trucaller. works great
      almost no spammers

    • askep3

      So should I not add my number on the list?

      • 2008crna

        When the Opt out List first came out, I noticed a reduction in telemarketer calls. In fact, when speaking to a person, you can just repeat “Take me off your calling list” and the call will end. However, robo calling is illegal to begin with. The problem is that most numbers are fictitious and/or spoofed so any attempts for legal recourse are essentially pointless. If you are getting human callers right now, your name on the list may help eliminate it. If you are getting robo calls right now, well, I guess we are without options until the FCC cracks down on things.

  • Jason B

    So do any of these third party apps for ios10 currently exist for displaying this info on the lock screen?

    • fiiiiine

      this ^

    • No iOS 10 optimized app is allowed into the App Store until iOS 10 releases

      • Jason B

        Well, that sucks, but glad it’s coming! About time!

  • 5723alex .

    Apple just released iOS 10 dev beta 7/public beta 6.