FCC Bans AI-Generated Robocalls Ahead of US Election

The commission has granted state attorneys general the authority to pursue legal action against those still using the technology.
FCC Bans AI-Generated Robocalls Ahead of US Election

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has banned robocalls generated by artificial intelligence (AI) amid growing concern about the misuse of the technology. The commission has granted state attorneys general the authority to pursue legal action against those still using the technology. Previously, attorneys general were limited to addressing the aftermath of receiving unwanted AI-generated robocalls.

“Bad actors are using AI-generated voices in unsolicited robocalls to extort vulnerable family members, imitate celebrities and misinform voters. We’re putting fraudsters behind these robocalls on notice. State attorneys general will now have new tools to crack down on these scams and ensure the public is protected from fraud and misinformation,” said FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel in a statement.

FCC’s decision comes just days after Rosenworcel proposed making such robocalls illegal under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), which is also the primary law the FCC uses to help limit junk calls.

Robocalls could impact US elections

FCC’s decision to ban robocalls could be heavily influenced by the fraudulent robocall impersonating President Joe Biden which was circulating ahead of New Hampshire's Democratic primary election.

If not checked, such misuse of the technology could significantly impact the upcoming presidential election. Earlier this year, a group of 26 state attorneys general also urged the FCC to impose limitations on the utilization of AI in telemarketing.

According to data from the National Consumer Law Center (NCLC), the US makes around 33 million robocalls per day, which amounts to over 50 billion a year. Moreover, around 68 million U.S. citizens lost over US$ 29 billion to scam callers in 2022.

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