FCC issues $120M fine for 'neighbor spoof' robocalls

FCC issues $120M fine for 'neighbor spoof' robocalls”

Authorities say a Miami man's operation apparently made 96 million spoofed robocalls created to trick people into answering their phone and listening to sales pitches about vacation deals.

A federal agency has proposed its largest fine ever, $120 million, for illegal robocalls that "spoofed" or falsely identified the caller.

Abramovich's operation seemingly made the calls in order to trick unsuspecting consumers into answering and listening to a series of advertising messages that posed as "exclusive" deals from prominent travel firms including Expedia, Marriott, Hilton and TripAdvisor. Instead, they got transferred to a call center where salespeople pushed low-quality travel deals, often related to timeshares, that were unaffiliated with the brands in the prerecorded message at the start of the call.

After receiving complaints from travel companies and recipients alike, the FCC traced the calls back to Abramovich.

The FCC said Abramovich used a technique known as "neighbor spoofing" to gain the trust of consumers. The FCC also regulates such calls and has filed more than 100 lawsuits against individuals and companies accused of robocalling and other "Do Not Call" violations.

If you get an inquiry from someone who says they represent a company or a government agency seeking personal information, hang up and call the phone number on your account statement, in the phone book or on the company's or government agency's website to verify the authenticity of the request. "That's why I'm pleased that today the Commission is taking major, unprecedented action against what appears to be the most egregious "neighbor spoofing" robocalling scheme we have ever seen".

Although they seem to easily persist, robo-callers have been under constant threat, having the FCC, FTC, cell phone carriers, and even congress take measures to stop them. Abramovich's scheme also disrupted an emergency medical paging service used by first responders.

The FCC said it was responding to complaints from consumers as well as from TripAdvisor, which had received complaints from robocallees.

Attempts to reach Abramovich were unsuccessful.

"When phone numbers are spoofed and what appears to be a trusted or familiar source actually originates from a party intent on misleading, defrauding. or causing harm", FCC commissioner Mignon Clyburn said.

Like this



25 June 2017
Cosby lawyers accuse Andrea Constand of lying to police
Constand and Johnson are the only Cosby accusers expected to testify during the two-week trial in Norristown , Pennsylvania. Constand said she made it clear she did not welcome the advances. "And I believed he supported numerous athletic programs".

25 June 2017
Casey: PA can't maintain healthcare without federal help
Numerous companies help manage state Medicaid programs, meaning their profits can be hurt by those cuts as well. Report is expected early next week.

25 June 2017
SeaWorld under investigation by two federal agencies
The Justice Department and SeaWorld declined to comment, and the SEC did not immediately respond to inquiries from the media. It details alleged mistreatment of orca whales by SeaWorld workers, and it led to massive amounts of backlash.

25 June 2017
Delhi NCR's second worldwide airport to come up at Jewar
Amrit Pandurangi, independent aviation expert told IANS: "From users' perspective its always good to have another airport". The Noida International Airport will be located 72Kms from IGI Airport and 65 Kms from Hindon Air Force station Ghaziabad.

25 June 2017
Modi arrives in US; Trump calls him `true friend'
In fact, the two (leaders) will have dinner, a working dinner at the White House. "He (Trump) is not new to India. He has said his one-day visit to the country will further strengthen relations between India and Portugal.

25 June 2017
Bikie fatally shot in Tweed Heads
The heavily tattooed man was believed to be a member of the Lone Wolf gang, News Corp is reporting. However, police are yet to confirm the gang connection as well as the identity of the victim.

25 June 2017
We're working our a**** off to win Confederations Cup, says Hernandez
The win, however, came at a cost as Manchester City-bound midfielder Bernardo Silva was substituted because of an ankle injury. The current world champions Germany, and winners of the Asian Cup Australia gave a thrilling 5-point game on Monday.

25 June 2017
Four Conservative Republicans Balking at GOP Health Plan
Johnson said in an interview with WLUK-TV, "I'm saying I haven't gotten the information yet to convince myself that I'm a 'yes'". In a separate statement, Paul said he would vote against the bill "in its current form, but I remain open to negotiation".

25 June 2017
Police Announce Cause Of Grenfell Tower Fire, And It Wasn't Arson
She added that the refrigerator, which has a freezer on the bottom and refrigerator on top, has not been the subject of a recall. Tributes to victims of the Grenfell Tower block fire are seen near the building in North Kensington, west London , Friday.

25 June 2017
White House says Trump does not intend to fire investigator Mueller
The President also said some of the staffers that Mr Mueller has hired for his investigation "are all Hillary Clinton supporters". He described the special counsel, who is a former FBI director, as "good friends" with the former head of the FBI, James Comey .