FCC Sets A Record Breaking $120M Fine For Annoying Robocalls

FCC Sets A Record Breaking $120M Fine For Annoying Robocalls

by Toma Habashi, 16th May 2018

The Federal Communications Commission has imposed a record fine on a Florida man who is accused of placing nearly 100 million robocalls.  The man has been fined $120m (£88m) for making more than 90 million automated marketing telephone calls in the United States.

Miami salesman Adrian Abramovich was accused of trying to sell holidays and timeshare properties with the unsolicited robocalls. The FCC announced on Thursday that they would be fining the man for posing a threat to public safety with the “illegal” calls.

So what are Robocalls? Well, robocalls are automated telemarketing calls that the FCC considers illegal, unless the recipient agrees to be called.

“The evidence indicates that Abramovich is the perpetrator of one of the largest—and most dangerous—illegal robocalling campaigns that the Commission has ever investigated,” said the FCC in its complaint.

Mr Abramovich said he had not intended to “defraud or cause harm”.

But FCC chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement that the defence “isn’t very convincing”.

“Mr Abramovich doesn’t dispute that he was responsible for placing 96,758,223 robocalls during a three-month period in 2016,” he said.

“He doesn’t dispute that all these robocalls were made without the recipients’ consent.”

The question on everyone’s minds is “Will this put an end to automated calls?” Sadly this is unlikely to eliminate automated calls however it has highlighted the problem for sure. Will we see similar GDPR regulations come into force for phone calls?

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