Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt is urging the five major phone companies to offer call-blocking technology to their customers.
In a letter to the chief executives of AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile and Century Link, Schmidt, along with 44 other state attorneys general, stated a new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rule clarification allows telecommunications service providers to offer customers the ability to block unwanted calls and verifies that federal law does not prohibit offering the services. In the letter, the attorneys general stated, “Every year, our offices are flooded with consumer complaints pleading for a solution to stop intrusive robocalls. Your companies are now poised to offer your customers the help they need. We urge you to act without delay.”
Schmidt said phone carriers had previously claimed they could not offer such services. At a July 2013 Congressional committee hearing, representatives from the U.S. Telecom Association and CTIA testified that legal barriers prevent carriers from implementing advanced call-blocking technology to reduce the number of unwanted telemarketing calls.
“The FCC in its rule has made it clear that phone companies can assist us in our ongoing efforts to reduce unwanted and unsolicited calls to consumers,” Schmidt said. ”I’m hopeful the phone companies will work quickly to implement this technology to give consumers the power to decide which calls they want to accept.”