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Stenehjem joins letter urging FCC to allow call-blocking technology

BISMARCK - North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has joining his counterparts in 38 other states in urging the Federal Communications Commission to allow phone carriers to use existing call-blocking technology to better protect their cust...

BISMARCK – North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has joining his counterparts in 38 other states in urging the Federal Communications Commission to allow phone carriers to use existing call-blocking technology to better protect their customers from unwanted telemarketing and scam calls.

The technology allows carriers to identify and block unwelcome sales calls at their customers’ request, but some carriers are reluctant to use it, in part because of the belief that federal law prevents them from blocking such calls on their customers’ behalf, according to a news release from Stenehjem’s office.

In a letter to the FCC, the attorneys general are asking for a formal opinion on whether an exception can be made to allow companies to block illegal telemarketing calls at the request of a customer.

Stenehjem said his office received 195 complaints last year about violations of the Do Not Call laws, and 45 percent of the complaints related to robocalls.

More than 511,100 telephone numbers with the North Dakota area code 701 are registered on the Do Not Call list. Land line and cellphone users can register at www.donotcall.gov .

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