If you have a good idea on how to stop harassing robocalls, the Federal Trade Commission wants to know about it. The agency is offering a $50,000 prize to the best idea. The contest is open to the public. So far the FTC has received 230 submissions. The deadline is 5 pm EST January 17th. The winner will be announced on April 15th.
“The FTC is attacking illegal robocalls on all fronts, and one of the things that we can do as a government agency is to tap into the genius and technical expertise among the public,” said David Vladeck, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, when he announced the challenge and prize this afternoon at the Commission’s Robocall Summit. “We think this will be an effective approach in the case of robocalls because the winner of our challenge will become a national hero.”
A commercial robocall is a telephone call that delivers a recorded sales message. These calls often are unwanted and frequently deceptive. Under the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule, the vast majority of commercial robocalls are illegal unless the recipient has given the caller advance written permission to call them.