Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Deborah Ross (NC-02) and Congressman David Kustoff (TN-08) introduced the Deter Obnoxious, Nefarious, and Outrageous Telephone Calls (DO NOT Call) Act, bipartisan legislation that will deter robocalls by creating stricter penalties for companies and individuals who engage in the intentional harassment of consumers.

“Robocalls have skyrocketed in the past few years, posing serious threats to consumers—especially to older Americans. With a changing technological landscape, malicious actors and companies are increasingly able to extract sensitive personal information to defraud and scam victims,” said Congresswoman Ross.  “It’s deeply concerning just how widespread robocalls are in North Carolina and beyond. There is an urgent need for Congressional action to protect consumers, to deter predatory robocalls, and to hold individuals and companies accountable. I am proud to introduce this bipartisan legislation with Representative Kustoff and will continue working with my colleagues in the Senate to see it become law.”

“I have heard from countless people throughout West Tennessee who are tired of receiving harassing robocalls. That is why I joined Congresswoman Deborah Ross in introducing the DO NOT Call Act. This bill would give more authority to our judicial system to protect Americans from being scammed and defrauded, and further deter bad actors from placing these calls in the first place,” said Congressman Kustoff. “This legislation creates further protections to prohibit robocalls that improve the TRACED Act, which I was proud to introduce last Congress and was signed into law.  I urge my colleagues to swiftly pass the DO NOT Call Act to build on the success of the TRACED Act and put an end to these scams.” 

Robocalls are outlawed under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). However, there were over 45 billion robocalls in 2020 alone. Of that 45 billion, over 1.7 billion were placed in North Carolina. Specifically, this legislation will allow prison terms of up to one year for willfully and knowingly violating the TCPA, allow prison terms for up to three years for excessive or repeated violations of the TCPA, and double the maximum penalties under the TCPA for falsifying caller ID from $10,000 to $20,000.

The DO NOT Call Act was introduced in the Senate by Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV).