Section 13(d)(1) of the Pallone-Thune Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (TRACED Act) directed the the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) to establish a process for registering a “single consortium that conducts private-led efforts to trace back the origin of suspected unlawful robocalls.” The FCC is required to consider new interested consortia on an annual basis.

On April 20, 2022, the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau (Bureau) issued a Public Notice requesting parties interested in serving as the consortium to submit Letters of Intent (LOI). The current registered consortium – the USTelecom – The Broadband Association’s Industry Traceback Group (ITG) – need not submit such an LOI. 

As explained in the Bureau’s Public Notice: “Unlawful prerecorded or artificial voice message calls—robocalls—plague the American public. In many instances, unlawful robocalls include inaccurate or misleading caller identification information, known as spoofed caller ID. The spoofed caller ID makes it more difficult to identify the source of the call. In order to enforce the laws prohibiting illegal robocalls, government and industry work together to trace unlawful spoofed robocalls to their origination—a process known as ‘traceback.’ Congress acknowledged the beneficial collaboration between the Commission and the private sector on traceback issues and, in section 13(d) of the TRACED Act, required the Commission to register a single consortium to conduct private-led traceback efforts to trace back suspected unlawful robocalls.”

Interested parties have until May 20, 2022, to submit their LOIs. The FCC will then take initial comments (by June 3, 2022) and reply to comments (by June 10, 2022). The Bureau will select the single registered consortium by August 18, 2022.