FCC chairman Ajit Pai is preparing a new set of anti-robocalling measures that the commission will vote on during its next public meeting on June 6. The ruling would compel carriers to make automatic call blocking an opt-out feature for customers rather than an opt-in feature. Pai has a couple of suggestions for filtering methods including one based off the customer’s own contacts list on their phone.
Widely speaking, the chairman talks about filters derived from “analytics and consumer ‘white lists.'” Call blocking apps from third-party developers already use existing data to place numbers on certain lists. More aggressive filtering, such as a contacts list-based system, would remain opt-in, though. Beyond that suggestion, consumer white lists can take on other forms.
Pai is also encouraging voice service providers to also adopt STIR/SHAKEN standards — in which sending and receiving carriers conduct checks on callers’ and certify that their numbers aren’t spoofed. In a blog post, he mentioned that carriers wanted legal assurances in deploying such technologies, so he would also propose safe harbor exemptions for those companies if in case a robocall fails to filter out by the STIR/SHAKEN process.
The chairman’s rules do not force telcos to offer these services for free, though he does urge them to do so.