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Consumer Reports Article: Robocalls Decline, but FCC's Efforts Still Have a Long Way to Go

Regulator moves to block overseas calls, where most robocalls originate. Consumers can also take steps to limit unwanted calls.

Yet the number of robocalls this year is expected to reach 48.5 billion, down only slightly from 50.4 billion in 2021, according to the latest figures by YouMail, a robocall blocking and tracking firm. And while the improvement is welcome, it still breaks down to an eye-popping 4 billion monthly robocalls.

“We’re on pace for at most a small decline from last year’s robocall volume, despite the rollout of Stir/Shaken,” says YouMail CEO Alex Quillici. 

The problem is that Shaken/Stir can’t block all calls, particularly those from overseas, where the majority of robocalls originate. As a result, the FCC recently adopted new rules to target problematic overseas calls. 

These rules will require that the U.S.-based phone service providers who manage international calls, known as “gateway providers,” ensure that their networks comply with Shaken/Stir and that they take additional measures to validate the identity of the traffic they are routing to the U.S.  

“The Stir/Shaken expansion is good, since there will be fewer ways for spoofed calls to get on the U.S. telephone network,” says Quillici at YouMail. 

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