FCC Orders All U.S. Voice Providers to Immediately Mitigate Robocall Traffic from Auto Warranty Scammers; Failure to Heed FCC Directive Could be Embarrassingly Costly

On June 21, 2022, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC” or “Commission”) issued an Order, directing all U.S.-based voice service providers (“VSPs”) to immediately investigate and stop carrying traffic from a known robocall scam marketing auto warranties made by or on behalf of the following: (1) Roy Cox, Jr.; (2) Aaron Michael Jones; (3) their individual associates; and (4) associated entities (collectively, the “Cox/Jones/Sumco Panama Operation”). A VSP may satisfy this obligation if it terminates a customer relationship with the Cox/Jones/Sumco Panama Operation or blocks all traffic from the Cox/Jones/Sumco Panama Operation and from the following originating carriers: Mobi Telecom, Virtual Telecom, Fugle Telecom, Call Pipe, Geist Telecom, Global Lynks, South Dakota Telecom, and SipKonnect.

The robocall traffic at issue includes prerecorded messages marketing vehicle service warranties. The messages encourage call recipients to follow prompts to speak with a “warranty specialist” about extending or reinstating their car warranty.

In order to assist VSPs in identifying the subject robocall traffic, the FCC provides the following information about individuals and entities associated with the Cox/Jones/Sumco Panama Operation:

Individuals

Companies

Roy Melvin Cox Jr., resident of Tustin, California

Sumco Panama S.A.

Aaron Michael Jones, resident of Orange County, California

Sumco Panama Inc.

Scott Presta, resident of Lakeway, Texas

Tech Direct LLC

Kathleen Presta, resident of Lakeway, Texas

Posting Express Inc.

Stacey Yim, resident of La Crescenta, California

7 Sundays Inc.

Jovita Migdaris Cedeno Luna, resident of San Francisco, Panama

Texas Outdoor Adventures, Inc.

Livia Szuromi, resident of Budapest, Hungary

 

Maria Alejandra Gonzalez

 

Davinder Singh

 

Andrea Baloghne Horvath, resident of Budapest, Hungary

 

Adam Radimiri

 

June Batista, resident of Costa Mesa, California

 

Julie K. Bridge, resident of Upland, California

 

VSPs are not required to file a report with the FCC if it terminates a customer relationship with the Cox/Jones/Sumco Panama Operation or blocks all traffic from same and the originating providers listed above. However, if any VSP, after investigation of the subject illegal robocall traffic does not terminate a customer relationship or block the traffic, it will be required to provide a written report to the FCC with the results of its investigation.  (In any event, service providers may wish to document their investigation and compliance efforts for potential future use.) If the VSP concludes that the identified traffic was not illegal, the report must include an explanation as to why the VSP has reasonably concluded that the identified calls were not illegal and what steps it took to reach that conclusion. If the VSP concludes that the traffic is illegal but is unable to effectively mitigate the traffic as described herein, the report must include any alternative steps the VSP has taken to effectively mitigate that traffic and identify the source of the traffic should the notified provider find that the traffic comes from an upstream provider with direct access to the Public Switched Telephone Network. Any VSP filing such a report must do so within two weeks of the Order referenced herein and shall demonstrate its ongoing efforts to mitigate the traffic associated with the Cox/Jones/Sumco Panama Operation.  Filing instructions are set forth in paragraph 12 of the Order.  Service providers may wish to consider filing its report or certain information in the report on a confidential basis so that it is not immediately available to the public, including class action plaintiffs’ attorneys.

YouMail Analysis

YouMail[1] provides a service (YPS Health Scan) for a one-time fee that enables service providers to check their traffic for the presence of Sumco Panama calls operating in their network in the aftermath of the FCC order.  Utilizing YouMail’s service (or similar services) could help your company avoid becoming the next target of an FCC take down order.  If you are interested in learning about YPS Health Scan, please contact YouMail directly.      

NEED HELP WITH ROBOCALL MITIGATION, COMPLIANCE AND LITIGATION SUPPORT/DEFENSE AGAINST BUSINESS & LEGAL CHALLENGES?

The CommLaw Group Can Help!

Given the complexity and evolving nature of the FCC’s rules, regulations and industry policies & procedures around Robocall Mitigation and Compliance issues (e.g., Stir/Shaken, TRACED Act, FCC Rules & Regulations, US Telecom Industry group, ATIS, NECA, VoIP Numbering Waivers, Know Your Customer and the private sector ecosystem), as well as the increased risk of business disputes, consumer protection enforcement by state attorneys general, and even civil litigation, and anticipating the potential torrent of client questions and concerns, The CommLaw Group formed a “Robocall Mitigation Response Team” to help clients (old and new) tackle their unique responsibilities.

CONTACT US NOW, WE ARE STANDING BY TO GUIDE YOUR COMPANY’S COMPLIANCE EFFORTS

[1] Marashlian & Donahue, PLLC represent YouMail.

ATTORNEY ADVERTISING DISCLAIMER: This information may be considered advertising in some jurisdictions under the applicable law and ethical rules. The determination of the need for legal services and the choice of a lawyer are extremely important decisions and should not be based solely upon advertisements or self-proclaimed expertise. No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers