Attorney General Phil Weiser announces formation of nationwide anti-robocall litigation task force
Attorneys general form a national, bipartisan task force to combat robocalling
Aug. 2, 2022 (DENVER) – Attorney General Phil Weiser today announced that Colorado is joining a nationwide anti-robocall litigation task force of 50 attorneys general to investigate and take legal action against the telecommunications companies responsible for bringing a majority of foreign robocalls into the United States. This bipartisan nationwide task force has one goal: to cut down on illegal robocalls.
“Robocalls are an ongoing issue for Coloradans,” Weiser said. “We are committed to stopping illegal and unwanted calls and will continue to collaborate nationwide on solutions to end this scourge and protect consumers.”
The task force 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 return for steady revenue. The task force will focus on the bad actors throughout the telecommunications industry, to help reduce the number robocalls that Coloradans receive and benefit the companies that are following the rules.
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 against seniors, Amazon scams against consumers, and many other scams targeting 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. 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 following are 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.
Report fraudulent or unwanted telephone calls here, or call Stop Fraud Colorado at 1-800-222-4444 if you believe you have been the victim of a fraudulent call or text.