The government is getting behind a new round of enforcement and prevention of the dreaded robocall — the FCC has new rules in place, the Senate has approved a bill on the matter while the House is still working on it. Nevertheless, the long arm of the law has been on the prowl targeting illicit operations and that has culminated in a multilateral crackdown led by the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission called "Operation Call it Quits," which includes a whopping 94 enforcement actions from 45 government agencies.
For the FTC's part, it has drawn up four new cases — three of them against companies placing mass calls to those on the Do Not Call Registry using deceptive advertising ploys, one of them against Derek Jason Bartoli, the developer and vendor of an autodialer program that was used to send 57 million calls, many from spoofed numbers, in the second half of 2017. In two of these cases, court orders that include civil fines are pending judges' approvals; the other two are currently proceeding to trial.
The commission has also been able to settle three other cases against telemarketer groups and will result in individuals being banned from practicing trades, asset turnovers, and relatively marginal civil penalties. Many financial judgments ranged in the millions of dollars and were suspended based on the defendants' inability to pay them. Some of the cases were handled by the Department of Justice on behalf of the FTC and had interagency assistance. The other 87 enforcement actions — including five actions on criminal violations — come from 25 agencies on the federal, state, and local levels.
With the FCC's new rules in place to get carriers to deploy systematic call-blocking features for their customers, you should eventually not have to deal with fake numbers and pre-recorded floggers. Until that day, you can report the calls you get to ftc.gov/calls.