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FCC fines robocaller $2.9 million for making over 180 calls without permission

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The Federal Communications Commission has been working to crack down on robocalls, and today it's issuing a $2.9 million fine against a company that it says made more than 4.7 million automated calls without permission to cellphones during the 2012 US Presidential elections. The company, Dialing Services, received an FCC citation over a year ago warning it that continuing this practice could result in fines of up to $16,000 per unlawful call. Apparently, it didn't stop — the commission says that Dialing Services has made 184 unlawful calls since, and it's levying the maximum possible fine again them.

"Robocalling cell phones without a consumer’s consent is not only annoying, it is unlawful,” Travis LeBlanc, acting chief of the FCC's Enforcement Bureau, says in a statement. Dialing Services' business is fairly straightforward: it offers clients, including political campaigns, the ability to record a call and blast it out to millions of phones. That's potentially illegal, however, as callers are required to receive permission from a consumer before sending an automated call to their cellphone. While the FCC is working actively to stop existing robocallers, it isn't the only one — the FTC has also been doing its best to find ways to stop them automatically.