Robocalls are one of the most annoying things for anyone and if you live in North Dakota, not only are they annoying, but they're also illegal.

According to statements made by North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, approximately 25 percent of consumer complaints in 2017 were of illegal robocalls. In 2017, the number of consumer complaints received by the consumer protection division was 1,125. The top five complaints are listed below:

1. Do Not Call/Robocall = 279

2. Imposter Scams (grandparent, romance, IRS scam, sweepstakes, etc.) = 119

3. Contractor/Home Improvement = 88

4. Debt Adjustment/Settlement, Credit Counseling = 75

5. Identity Theft = 53

Stenehjem, along with a bipartisan group of Attorneys General recently urged the FCC to address problems with robocalls and spoofing (callers falsifying their identity). There have now been rules put in place by the FCC that allows phone service providers to block invalid phone numbers.

In reference to potential spoofing, the FCC is advising that consumers:

  • Be careful about responding to any request for personal identifying information.
  • Never give out personal information, such as account numbers, passwords, mother’s maiden name, in response to unexpected calls.
  • If you get an inquiry from someone saying they represent a company or government agency seeking information, hang up and call the phone number found on your account statement or on the agency’s website.

With the crackdown on spoofing, hopefully, the numbers for illegal robocalls and spoofing reported by the consumer protection division won't be nearly as high in 2018.