We all get them — annoying unwanted text messages from fraudulent numbers. Hoping to remedy the issue, Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced recently that he has joined a bipartisan coalition, which includes all of his state counterparts, urging the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to crack down on these messages.
In a letter to the FCC the attorney general pledged support for the proposed rule, which would require mobile wireless providers to block unlawful text messages at the network level if they originate from invalid, unassigned or unused numbers as well as numbers that are included on a Do Not Originate list.
The letter also encourages the FCC to continue pushing the U.S. wireless industry to develop caller ID technology for text messages, which the attorneys general claim will protect citizens from text scams and assist law enforcement in investigations.
“… scammers are increasingly using text messages to perpetrate scams. Today, we asked the FCC to adopt new policies to help us stop scammers from sending unwanted text messages to Kentuckians,” Cameron explained.
FCC statistics indicate that the organization received more than 15,000 consumer complaints regarding unwanted texts in 2021. Two years ago, scammers reportedly stole more than $86 million through frauds perpetrated via scam text messages.
Hopefully the FCC adopts rules preventing these potential text message scams. In the meantime, the FBI offers the following advice for dealing with such messages:
If you get a text message you weren’t expecting and it asks you to give some personal or financial information, don’t click on any links. Legitimate companies won’t ask for information about your account by text.
If you think the message might be real, contact the company using a phone number or website you know is real. Not the information in the text message.
There are several ways to report text message scams, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Copy the message and forward it to 7726, which spells out SPAM. This helps your wireless provider spot and block similar messages in the future.
Report it on the messaging app you use. Look for the option to report junk or spam.