FCC Fines Man $120 Million For Making Millions Of Robocalls

FCC Fines Man $120 Million For Making Millions Of Robocalls

After answering the calls, people were redirected to foreign call centers that attempted to sell timeshares and vacation packages. Abramovich, a Miami-based travel marketer it said was being tens of millions of nuisance calls made over a three-month period. Abramovich tried to convince the agency to significantly lower the fine by saying that he had no intention to cause harm and that the amount was unconstitutional.

The FCC said in June "Abramovich is the perpetrator of one of the largest - and most unsafe - illegal robocalling campaigns that the Commission has ever investigated". He actually caused harm. Pai also said: "Just ask his victims - a number of whom are elderly - who were duped into purchasing travel deals under false pretenses". The agency has said he led "one of the largest - and most risky - illegal robocalling campaigns that the commission has ever investigated".

To increase the likelihood that consumers would answer his calls, the FCC said, Abramovich's operation made calls that appeared to be local-a practice known as "neighbor spoofing".

These call centers were not related to the major companies, the FCC said.

A pre-recorded message would offer an "exclusive" holiday or travel deal, posing as an offer from a well-known brand such as TripAdvisor or Hilton hotels.

TripAdvisor and medical paging provider Spōk sent complaints to FCC and actively helped the investigation. 30 billion robocalls previous year alone.

Abramovich's methods were typical of most robocall schemes.

Last month, Abramovich told a Senate panel that he was not the "kingpin of robocalling" and denied any wrongdoing. Abramovich said, during the hearing, that his robocalls could be done "with the click of a button" and thousands could be instantly through advances in software.

According to the FCC, consumer complaints about neighbor spoofing have more than dodubled in the first few months of this year, leading them to come out with some helpful tips to help people avoid getting manipulated by these scams.

"It is the top consumer protection priority for the chairman", said Wiquist, "but there's no silver bullet".

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