TCPA Regulatory Update — USTelecom-Led Traceback Group to Continue as Commission’s Registered Consortium; Commission Signs Updated European MOU with a Focus on Robocalling
As we reported previously, under the Pallone-Thune Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (“TRACED Act”) and FCC rules, the FCC must annually select a single consortium to lead efforts to trace back the origin of illegal robocalls. In August, the Enforcement Bureau announced, in a Report and Order, that the USTelecom-led Industry Traceback Group (“ITG”), the current incumbent, would continue as the registered traceback consortium. In selecting the USTelecom-led ITG, the Enforcement Bureau found that the ITG continues to meet the statutory requirement of neutrality and that its “diversity of voice service providers representing all sectors of the telephone calling ecosystem” provides a broad cross-section of the industry, which guards against operational bias.
The renewal of the ITG as the registered consortium was effective immediately upon the release of the Enforcement Bureau’s Report and Order.
Commission Signs Updated European MOU with a Focus on Robocalling
On September 12, 2022, Chairwoman Rosenworcel announced that the Federal Communications Commission and the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (“BEREC”) signed an updated Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) that expands the previous MOUs to include a new focus on combatting unwanted robocalls and the promotion of 5G and other next-generation communications technologies. This MOU builds on the previous Commission-BEREC March 2012 and July 2018 MOUs by outlining how the Commission and BEREC will exchange information, such as best practices for preventing unwanted robocalls and encouraging the deployment of broadband infrastructure. The MOU also includes frameworks for technical skill sharing between the two regulatory bodies and conducting bilateral meetings, seminars, and workshops designed to facilitate action on issues of mutual interest, like mitigating illegal robocalls.
In announcing the updated MOU, Chairwoman Rosenworcel noted that “[o]ur broadband and communications technology goals will be better achieved by working collaboratively with our partners and informed by lessons learned around the world.”
The text of the MOU has not yet been made publicly available.