Nebraska has joined with the vast majority of states to request five major phone companies offer their customers call-blocking technology; technology the companies had claimed federal law prevented them from offering.
Forty-five states have sent a joint letter to chief executives of the carriers pointing out a new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rule clarifies that federal law doesn’t prohibit offering customers the ability to block unwanted calls.
“Every year, our offices are flooded with consumer complaints pleading for a solution to stop intrusive robocalls. Your companies are now poised to offer your customers the help they need. We urge you to act without delay,” Attorneys General from the 45 states say in the letter to AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile, and CenturyLink.
Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson is one of the signatories.
Peterson said phone carriers have claimed legal barriers prevent them from providing the service.
“The FCC has made it clear that phone companies can assist us in our fight against unwanted, annoying, and sometimes expensive calls,” Peterson said in a written statement released by his office. “We will continue to press these phone carriers to give their customers what they have been asking for – a way to stop these calls before they ever come through.”
The Attorney General’s office reports call-blocking options already exist for Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone service (NoMoRobo.com) and Android cell phones (Call Control).
The office says that last September, 39 attorneys general, led by Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller and Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster, called on the FCC to allow phone companies to utilize call-blocking technologies. The FCC Chairman endorsed the request and the FCC approved the rule clarification this month.
The attorneys general offices that signed today’s letter are: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.