Assemblyman Michael Fitzpatrick (R,C,I,Ref-Smithtown) is a sponsor of legislation that would help combat robocalls in the state by making it against the law to robocall an individual without prior-written consent (A.675). The bill would also require telephone service providers to offer free call mitigation technology to their customers.
Automated robocalls are becoming more than a nuisance to residents in our state. They have become interruptive, harassing, and fraudulent. This legislation would empower New Yorkers in reducing the number of these unwanted calls, said Fitzpatrick. Robocalls have been increasing in number and the state must make a bipartisan effort to protect consumers now.
YouMail, a company that tracks robocalls, found that more than 47.8 billion automated calls were placed nationwide in 2018, with more than 10 billion being made in January and February of 2019. The technology has made it even easier for scammers to place robocalls and even utilize spoofing, a technique where numbers are able to be masked to appear from the region the recipient lives. Robocalling often targets seniors, who may be more susceptible to scamming.
Fitzpatrick says that the legislation protects New Yorkers beyond the National Do Not Call Registry, which is often ignored by robocalling operations. If the bill is enacted, any entity that robocalls a consumer who has not given the entity consent to do so will be in violation of the law.