The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has formally announced comment deadlines for its Third Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM) regarding advanced methods to target and eliminate unlawful robocalls. The agency approved the proposal on June 7, 2019. Among other things, the FNPRM proposes a safe harbor for call blocking programs targeting unauthenticated calls, which may be spoofed, and safeguards to ensure that “critical” calls are not blocked.

Initial comments are due by July 24, 2019, with the reply comments due by August 23, 2019.

As previously reported by TCPAWorld, the FNPRM specifically seeks comment on “what numbers should be required on a Critical Calls List.” This would be a list of numbers maintained by any voice service provider that offers call-blocking that could not be blocked, so long as the calls were authenticated.

The FNPRM proposes that the list would include “at least the outbound numbers of 911 call centers (i.e., PSAPs) and government emergency outbound numbers….” But the FCC also “recognize[s] that other calls are important to consumers,” citing “calls from schools, doctors, local governments and alarm companies, as well as fraud and weather alerts….” The FNPRM also mentions calls from “recall centers, hospitals and flight alerts.”

The agency issues an open invitation by asking, “[s]hould we expand the scope of the Critical Calls List to include any or all of these Categories (or any others)?”

Now is your chance TCPAWorld. Again, initial comments are due by July 24, 2019, with reply comments due by August 23, 2019.

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