December 19, 2019 / 5:51 PM / 2 months ago

Senate passes anti-robocall bill; president expected to sign it

WASHINGTON, Dec 19 (Reuters) - The Senate passed an anti-robocaller bill on Thursday, and President Donald Trump is expected to sign the measure aimed at cracking down on the billions of irritating and deceptive robocalls that Americans receive each month.

The Senate, on a voice vote, approved the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act, which would give the Federal Communications Commission the power to slap fines of up to $10,000 on robocallers and extend the statute of limitations to four years.

President Donald Trump is expected to sign the measure, which the U.S. House of Representatives approved on December 4.

Once it becomes law, as expected, voice service providers will be required to adopt call authentication technologies to help carriers determine if calls are legitimate.

Both U.S. Senators John Thune and Ed Markey, who are on the Senate Commerce Committee, praised the measure.

“I have yet to meet someone who says they enjoy receiving those unwanted and illegal robocalls that plague our phones, whether we’re at home, at work, or in the car,” said Thune.

Markey called the bill’s passage “a holiday gift.”

“The TRACED Act cracks down on scammers by requiring phone carriers to authenticate whether calls are legitimate, and then blocking unverified robocalls at no charge to consumers,” said Markey. (Reporting by Diane Bartz; editing by Diane Craft)

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