What Is The TRACED Act? Should Your Business Be Worried?

robocall prevented by the traced act

Amidst a very divided nation, one thing appears to still stand and that’s the hatred elected officials have for robocalls (also referred to as spam calls).

After a decisive 417-to-3 House vote and unanimous consent in the Senate, the Pallone-Thune TRACED Act was passed into law by President Trump on December 31, 2019.

But what is the TRACED act? Why has it received such decisive support? Should legitimate businesses like yourself be concerned? Let’s walk through the basics of the act.

What Is the TRACED Act?

Since the Pallone-Thune TRACED Act is a 44-page document, it’s difficult to simplify the extensive piece of legislature, but we’ve laid down the basics in what follows.

Its full name is the “Pallone-Thune Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act.” In essence:

 

  • It explicitly prohibits the One Ring Scam. If you’ve never heard of this, chances are you’re in the clear. The One Ring Scam is done by “agents” who dial from a spoofed number and let it ring exactly one time after which they hang up. They then expect callbacks from their victims, calls which get automatically redirected to whatever foreign line the original operator was using. This not only results in some really ugly fees, but it can also lead to further scamming if the victim does not hang up.

 

  • The bill further emphasizes the need for phone companies to label suspicious phone calls and allow consumers to block the numbers with no extra fees.

 

 

  • Another point is to give the FCC and the Justice Department the power to more easily prosecute Robocalls.

 

  • The act also makes governmental reports on Robocall measures mandatory. In essence, it orders the FCC and the Justice Department to step up their game

 

  • Of course, the TRACED Act does not leave out the consumer, which is now able to sue scammers and fraudulent callers more easily!

 

It further enables the FCC to solicit the participation of voice-service providers in the private-led process of tracing back the origins of all suspected scammers and robocalls. If a voice-service provider refuses to participate in the traceback process, the FCC is obligated to publish the name of the provider along with all the information it could gather about the business.

All of these points and a whole lot more (which you can review on the National Law Review’s detailed page about the TRACED Act) are now law after the bill passed Congress and was signed by the president in little more than a month.

Bill sponsor and GOP Whip John Thune (R – South Dakota) was already optimistic about its passing. Co-sponsor Frank Pallone (D – New Jersey) said:

We’re delighted the Senate acted quickly to pass this legislation to shutdown illegal robocalls. We’re working hard to help the American people get real relief from these relentless and illegal calls. We look forward to the President signing this overwhelmingly bipartisan legislation into law very soon.

UPDATE: The FCC came up with a framework for implementing the STIR/SHAKEN caller ID authentication protocols by June 30, 2021. The report on the rules can be found on the FCC website. This framework will be voted on on March 31, 2020.

Is There Cause for Concern for Legitimate Businesses?

While at first look it might not seem like we should be concerned, it’s debatable how interpretable the text of the Act actually is. It seems that the legislation should only target clear instances of illegal activity, while also keeping an eye on the enablers of such activity.

For instance, if a contact center company is working with a suspected scammer, the TRACED Act makes it mandatory for that company to contribute to traceback efforts. If the company then refuses to participate, its name will be published in connection to the suspected unlawful robocalls, along with whatever information the FCC can uncover about the business.

Some Good News

The Act also talks about the establishment of a “Safe Harbor” for voice service providers which have been mistakenly labeled or blocked. This ultimately protects businesses from liability in case of false positives.

As we all know in this industry, it’s very common for numbers to be mistakenly branded “fraud” or “scam”. The “safe harbor” will guard businesses against any damages. However, there’s also a downside to this – the “proof” must come from the traceback system to be put in place by the FCC according to the bill.

That’s about it! If you want to read more from our blog, check out the articles to the right.

If you want to keep up to date with news in the contact center industry, follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter!

With a background in Anthropology and a passion for digital marketing and copywriting, Georgian enjoys translating complex, often technical, concepts into everyday words. He loves optimizing everything, from texts, marketing funnels, and PPC campaigns to visual creations, social media feeds, or landing pages.

Share This Post

More To Explore

Inbound vs. Outbound Call Centers – How Do They Work?

While the role of call centers is crucial in customer service, companies often choose between inbound and outbound call centers. Each of these call centers come with unique functionalities, benefits, and challenges. This article explores the definitions, success KPIs, benefits, and considerations for both inbound and outbound call centers, helping you determine the best approach for your business needs. Additionally, we’ll discuss blended call centers, which combine the strengths of both inbound and outbound operations.

Read More »

What Is Conversational Analytics and how does it help your Call Center?

Conversational analytics stands as a crucial technology in customer service. It enables businesses to dissect and understand the nuances of their interactions with customers through voice and text. This field integrates advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP) to parse and analyze communication data. Here’s a deeper look into the types and components of conversational analytics:

Read More »

Free 30-day Proof of Concept

Unlock Your FREE Month of licensing and take your contact center to the next level.

Fill in this form and save big on your tech stack with NobelBiz OMNI+ cloud contact center software!

"*" indicates required fields

Hidden

Expert Form Tip: Sign Up with Google ReCAPTCHA

To use the CAPTCHA field on this form to protect your website from spam and bot abuse you will need to sign up with Google ReCAPTCHA. For more information on this, check out the Docs.

Important: Delete this tip before you publish the form.

Name*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

New LIVE Workshop

Boost Outbound Call Volumes With Hybrid Dialing

NEW ON-DEMAND FIRESIDE CHAT!

2023 Contact Center Industry Recap & Future Projections