Attorney General Chris Carr today announced that Georgia has joined a nationwide Anti-Robocall Litigation Task Force to investigate and take legal action against the telecommunications companies responsible for bringing a majority of foreign robocalls into the United States. This bipartisan Task Force has one goal: to cut down on illegal robocalls.
“Though progress has been made in our fight against illegal robocalls, unscrupulous telecommunications providers continue to enable the con artists who perpetuate these phone scams,” said Carr. “The Anti-Robocall Litigation Task Force will allow us to leverage the resources of all 50 states as we work to identify these fraudsters and better protect our fellow 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 that 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.
According to the National Consumer Law Center and Electronic Privacy Information Center, over 33 million scam robocalls are made to Americans every day.
The Task Force will focus on the bad actors throughout the telecommunications industry to reduce the number of robocalls that Georgia residents receive and help the companies that are following the rules.
An estimated $29.8 billion was stolen through scam calls in 2021. Most of this scam robocall traffic originates overseas.
The 50-state 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 Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division 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.
For additional information about how to protect yourself from scams, visit consumer.ga.gov.
If you believe you may have fallen victim to a scam, contact the Consumer Protection Division at 404-851-8600 or file a complaint online at https://consumer.georgia.gov/resolve-your-dispute/how-do-i-file-complaint.