Got Call-Blocking Issues? TMA Wants to Hear From You

The FCC has made combating unlawful robocalls its top consumer protection priority, but some central stations have been blocked or mislabeled as fraud.

McLEAN, Va. — The Monitoring Association (TMA) has launched an effort to hear from installing security contractors and monitoring service providers that have experienced call-blocking issues in order to present the information to the FCC.

Unwanted calls are by far the biggest consumer grievance the FCC receives, with more than 200,000 registered complaints each year, according to the agency. Advancements in technology have made it simple and inexpensive to make massive numbers of robocalls and to “spoof” caller ID information to hide a caller’s true identity.

Thus, the agency has said combating unlawful robocalls is its top consumer protection priority.

The FCC is seeking comment on any call-blocking issues experienced by consumers, including central station alarm companies, in connection with the implementation and effectiveness of carrier opt-in and opt-out call-blocking services.

Last year, the FCC clarified that carriers may block calls to consumers based on analytics, without the customer’s up-front consent, as long as customers can opt-out of such blocking. TMA says a number of carriers, including AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile, are providing opt-out and/or opt-in call blocking to their customers and in some cases, calls from a central station have been blocked or mislabeled as fraud.

The association is seeking to provide information to the FCC concerning any issues alarm companies have experienced in connection with call blocking with the goal of ensuring that calls from central stations responding to an alarm are not blocked or mislabeled.

Those companies with such information are asked to report it to TMA Executive Director Celia T. Besore by email ([email protected]) no later than Feb. 12.

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