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

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