Networking to solve the problem of illegal robocalls

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Like the character in the 70s movie “Network,” many consumers are “mad as hell and not going to take this anymore.”  What’s aroused their ire?  Robocalls made in violation of a 2009 rule outlawing many of these automated calls.  That’s why the FTC is convening Robocalls: All the Rage, a one-day conference —  it’s free and open to the public — set for October 18, 2012, in Washington, DC.

Unlike many FTC workshops where the topic is law enforcement or policy, this summit will focus on the search for technological solutions to reduce the number of illegal robocalls.  As the just-released agenda shows, FTC Chairman Leibowitz will kick off the event.  Next on the schedule:  The Chief Technology Officers from the FTC and the FCC will explain the tech that enables robocalls. Then attendees will hear about the state of the telecom industry from insiders familiar with landline and wireless platforms, as well as the technology used to place automated calls. The view from the law enforcement trenches will be the subject of the next panel.  Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller and FTC and FCC staffers will talk about laws and regs addressing robocalls, how they’re enforced, and how illegal robocalls affect consumers.

The rest of the day will be devoted to crafting effective solutions. Panelists will explore three areas: 1) caller ID spoofing and call authentication; 2) data mining and anomaly detection; and 3) call blocking.  Experts will describe the technologies and analyze the potential each offers to reduce the number of illegal robocalls.  The day will end with an announcement by David Vladeck, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.

Registration begins at 8:15 AM at the FTC’s Conference Center, 601 New Jersey Avenue, N.W., in Washington DC.  Can’t make it in person?  Watch the webcast.  During the conference, you can tweet questions with the hashtag #FTCrobo or ask questions via the FTC's Facebook page.


This conference will hopefully find solutions to this problem. The FTC is right to identify and find solutions to problems affecting consumers. Thanks.
I am from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. We have staff who would like to watch the webcast. Please provide directions for that. Thank you for your assistance. Jeanne Burt Manager, DATCP Complaint Administration
Hi, Jeanne. We'd be delighted to have you and your colleagues in on the webcast. Just go to on the day of the event and you'll find the link to the webcast. Looking forward to "seeing" you on Thursday, October 18th.

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