Texas A.G. Paxton: Time to Hang Up on 'Robocalls'

It's estimated that the average American receives 24 'robocalls' on cell phones every month, and that figure is up a scary 30% just in the past year, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has joined a bipartisan group of forty Attorneys General nationwide to try to compel enforcement of a little known 1991 law that actually makes it a crime for a recorded message to call a person's cell phone without the written pre-consent of the phone's owner.

“Unwanted phone calls are both a nuisance and an invasion of privacy, and growing robocall scams could cost Texans anywhere from a few dollars to their life savings,”  Paxton said. “This coalition is dedicated to protecting citizens from these risks and engaging telecom companies in a nationwide effort to put an end to these intrusive calls.” 

Texas is working together with the Attorney General of California.  The two states are frequently on the opposite sides of major issues.

The development of so called 'spoofing' technology, which enables scammers and sales callers to make it look like anyone from the IRS to your child's school is calling, only make the problem worse.

Paxton says the forty states are working to develop a detailed understanding of technologically feasible methods to "reduce unwanted robocalls and illegal telemarketing, collaborating with major telecom companies to encourage expedition of consumer solutions, and determining what recommendations should be made to the FCC."

While technology to block robocalls is possible, and is being worked on by several tech firms, using the 1991 law to hold robocallers accountable is far less likely.Experts say many robocallers are based in foreign nations, out of the jurisdiction of U.S. law or of civil litigation.


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