The TRACED Act

Vote Recommendation
Updated:
March 10, 2020

Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act

Description
Consumer protection law that expands fines, penalties and enforcement tools for abusive telemarketing practices, robocalls and caller-ID "spoofing".
Details
description
Number
P.L. 116-105
account_balance
Category
Federal
today
Year
2019
people
Sponsors
Sen. John Thune, Rep. Frank Pallone

Robocall abuse

The TRACED Act is the first federal law designed to curb robocalls and “spoofing” — where telemarketers disguise calls to appear to come from trusted numbers. The law was passed with broad, bipartisan support and signed into law by President Trump.

  • There are 5 billion robocalls in the U.S. each month
  • Nearly 65-70% of Americans ignore calls from unrecognized numbers
  • The Federal Trade Commission receives 200,000 consumer complaints regarding robocalls each month

FCC enforcement tools

The TRACED Act directs the FCC to strengthen protections against robocalls and caller-ID spoofing. Under the law, telemarketers can now face a $10,000 fine per call. It also requires the Department of Justice and the FCC to create an interagency working group to research existing telemarketing laws, regulations and enforcement tools, and provide Congress with ongoing policy recommendations.

Robocall scams are more than just a nuisance to folks, they’re a shameful tactic to prey on the vulnerable.

Sen. John Thune (R—S.D)

Consumer protections & “spoofing”

The Trace Act also requires voice service providers to implement call authentication technology to address “spoofing”. The law prevents carriers from charging consumers for anti-spoofing technology relating to this legislation.

“The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) shall promulgate rules establishing when a provider may block a voice call based on information provided by the call authentication framework… The FCC shall also initiate a rulemaking to help protect a subscriber from receiving unwanted calls or texts from a caller using an unauthenticated number.”

-TRACED Act (P.L. 116-105)

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