After years of fighting intrusive robocalls, Attorney General Todd Rokita today announced Indiana as a leader of the nationwide Anti-Robocall Litigation Task Force, which will include 50 attorneys general.
The task force will investigate and take legal action against the telecommunications companies responsible for bringing a majority of foreign robocalls into our country. This bipartisan national task force has one goal: to stop illegal robocalls.
“Robocalls aren’t just a Hoosier problem. They are a nationwide problem,” Attorney General Rokita said. “That is why I am proud to lead my fellow attorneys general in the fight against these scammers and robocallers. If the telecom industry won’t police itself, this unprecedented task force will.”
The new task force, led by Indiana, Ohio, and North Carolina attorneys general, has issued 20 civil investigative demands to 20 gateway providers and other entities that are allegedly responsible for a majority of foreign robocall traffic. Gateway providers that bring foreign traffic into the U.S. telephone network have a responsibility to ensure the traffic is legal, but these providers are not taking sufficient action to stop robocall traffic. In many cases, they appear to be intentionally turning a blind eye in exchange for steady revenue. The task force will focus on the bad actors throughout the telecommunications industry to help reduce robocallers’ assault on Hoosiers.
Attorney General Rokita is committed to stopping illegal and unwanted calls. According to the National Consumer Law Center and Electronic Privacy Information Center, over 33 million scam robocalls are made to Americans every day. These scam calls include Social Security Administration fraud targeting seniors, Amazon scams targeting consumers, and many other scams harassing all consumers, including some of our most vulnerable citizens. An estimated $29.8 billion dollars was stolen through scam calls in 2021. Most of this scam robocall traffic originates overseas.
“I am a strong defender of our nation’s borders in every aspect,” Attorney General Rokita said. “This philosophy applies to foreign robocallers and scammers who also attack our country through telecommunication and attempt to take advantage of our people’s good nature.”
The task force is focused on shutting down the providers that profit from this illegal scam traffic and refuse to take steps to otherwise mitigate these scam calls. The targeted entities are responsible for 60% of robocalls.
Attorney General Rokita offers the following tips to avoid scams and unwanted calls:
- Be wary of callers who specifically ask you to pay by gift card, wire transfer, or cryptocurrency. For example, the Internal Revenue Service does not accept iTunes gift cards.
- Look out for prerecorded calls from imposters posing as government agencies. Typically, the Social Security Administration does not make phone calls to individuals.
- If you suspect fraudulent activity, immediately hang up and do not provide any personal information.