A bipartisan bill co-sponsored by one of Idaho's senators to crack down on unwanted robocalls is headed to the full Senate.
The Data Analytics Robocall Technology Act, which is being sponsored by Sens. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., was voted out of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation on Wednesday.
“Americans know these scams are out of control,” Crapo said in a statement. “Last year, robocalls increased by 47 percent, resulting in more than 26 billion robocalls. The DART Act gives us the opportunity to review call blocking programs and provides us opportunities to keep up and stop this fraudulent menace.”
The bill would require the Federal Communications Commission to carry out a yearlong pilot program where telephone providers can experiment with data analytics and caller identification to block calls that are likely to be spam. Numbers such as emergency services numbers and government agencies would be ineligible to be blocked. After the pilot period, the FCC would evaluate the program's effectiveness.
Crapo is also a co-sponsor of the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act, which passed the House of Representatives last week and awaits further action in the Senate. This bill would mandate caller identification authentication technology and increase civil penalties for breaking anti-robocall laws.