WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan cosponsored a bipartisan bill to crack down on robocallers who attempt to scam Granite Staters and Americans into sharing their personal or financial information. The legislation would double the penalties for illegal caller-ID “spoofing,” a tactic scammers often use to disguise their true identity and masquerade as government officials or well-known businesses.
“Robocalls, at best, are a nuisance, and at worst, can result in identity theft or falling victim to fraud,” said Senator Hassan. “We must provide the tools and resources to crack down on robocall scammers who impersonate government officials or others to defraud people. I am glad to work with my colleagues on both side of the aisle on this issue, and I will continue making sure that hardworking Granite Staters and Americans are protected from criminal robocalls.”
“Spoofing” of caller IDs is commonly used by criminal robocallers to mask their true identities. Con artists use this technique to boost their credibility and fool victims by making it appear as though they are calling from the Internal Revenue Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the local police department, or other legitimate sources. The bipartisan Anti-Spoofing Penalties Modernization Act, introduced by Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and cosponsored by Senator Hassan, would double the penalties for illegal spoofing under existing law, increasing the fine per violation from $10,000 to $20,000 and increasing the maximum fine from $1 million to $2 million.
In 2019, bipartisan legislation cosponsored by Senator Hassan was signed into law to require service providers and federal agencies to take aggressive action to block spam calls and prosecute those who make them. The Anti-Spoofing Penalties Modernization Act builds on these efforts by increasing penalties on those who impersonate government officials or other entities. Additionally, the Senate last year passed bipartisan legislation cosponsored by Senator Hassan to help fight scams designed to rob seniors of their assets.