Spoofing tactic appears to backfire on robocaller.
As a public service, we offer a couple of helpful CommLawBlog tips to folks who feel like violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) by making unsolicited prerecorded advertising calls:
- First and foremost, DON’T violate the TCPA;
- If you insist on ignoring Tip No. 1, at least:
- Don’t call numbers on the National Do No Call Registry;
- Don’t provide an “opt-out” number that doesn’t work;
- Don’t “spoof” somebody else’s number so that their number, not yours, shows up in the caller ID display of the folks you’re illegally calling;
- And, ABOVE ALL, don’t tick off constituents of Senator John McCain.
Security First of Alabama (Security First) made all these mistakes, and it’s now got $342,000 worth of reasons to regret having done so.
As our readers know, the TCPA requires (among other things) that telemarketers obtain a consumer’s prior express consent before making robocalls (i.e., calls using prerecorded voice messages) to the consumer’s residential phone. (There are some very limited exemptions to that prohibition, but they don’t come into play here. Also, there are additional requirements – like getting the consent in writing – when robocalls to mobile phones are involved, but those also didn’t come into play here.) We have previously reported big fines imposed by the FCC for violating that prior consent requirement. Security First’s fine may be somewhat smaller than those, but it does highlight a couple of points of interest.Continue Reading...