As the fight against robocalls wages on, the FTC stepped up its approach to shutting down the illegal calls that flood in from overseas. Just this week the FTC announced Project Point of No Entry (PoNE) charging the VoIP providers that are used as “point of entry” or “gateway” with eliminating the bad actors’ abilities to deliver calls to consumers in the US.
“Project Point of No Entry is yet another way the FTC is sending VoIP service providers the clear message that the Commission will not stand by as illegal robocalls blast American phones,” said Samuel Levine, Director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection. “We will use all of our tools to stop companies that knowingly permit illegal calls to flood into the country.”
How does the FTC’s Project PoNE take action?
1) identifies point of entry VoIP service providers that are routing or transmitting illegal call traffic,
2) demands they stop doing so and warns their conduct may violate the Telemarketing Sales Rule, and then
3) monitors them to pursue recalcitrant providers, including by opening law enforcement investigations and filing lawsuits when appropriate.
In the FTC’s efforts to stop these illegal robocalls they have partnered with the Industry Traceback Group (ITG), the FCC, and State AG’s offices and identified 24 service providers who are acting as point of entry for a substantial amount of the robocalls. The schemes of these calls range from COVID-19 relief to government imposters and everything in between. These identified companies have been contacted and were demanded to stop allowing these illegal calls to enter the US or face potential enforcement actions. 22 of the 24 service providers seem to have complied with the demands.
The FTC has made available to the public transcripts and the call recordings along with the names of the 24 companies who received warnings or cease and desist letters. You can take a peek for yourself HERE.
The landscape of telemarketing is changing. Now is the time to audit your business practices and ensure you are in compliance.