Robot calls drop 55% after free service, says Anatel


Anatel (National Telecommunications Agency) reported this Thursday (4) that the number of automatic calls dropped to less than half after the rule that ended free calls with less than three seconds.

The June decision sought to stop the growth of robocalls, in which robots fire thousands of calls a day. Companies had 30 days to comply with the rules.

Call volume dropped from 1.21 billion in the week the measure was published on June 6 to about 550 million in the third week of July, a drop of about 55%. “The weekly data indicate a consistent and constant drop in the volume of short calls generated in the networks of these providers”, said Anatel, in a note.

In the 30 days prior to the decision, Anatel identified 376 users who made more than 100,000 short calls in one day. In all, there were 4.2 billion calls of this type in the period.

According to the agency, the main agents are companies that provide telecommunication infrastructure for call centers, companies that provide specialized telemarketing, telemarketing and collection services, telecommunications companies and the financial sector (banks, credit and collection companies).

The agency also observed occurrences with retail, tourism, supermarkets and entities that ask for donations.

Anatel also reported having blocked the telecommunications resources of 186 companies for 15 days for violating the limit of 100,000 daily short calls. In a statement, the agency said the block was not of a sanctioning nature, but to stop the misuse of networks and annoyance to consumers.

In early June, Anatel determined that telecoms should send the list of companies that generated from 100 thousand calls per day of up to 3 seconds. They would be warned to stop the practice under penalty of blocking and fine, which can reach R$ 50 million.

The telecoms, then, should start blocking this type of user and start informing the regulatory agency fortnightly about the blocks made and new suspicious numbers.

The permission to charge for calls from the first second is part of a series of actions taken by Anatel in recent months to contain undue calls and the practice of abusive telemarketing.

Also in June, the 0303 prefix became mandatory in active telemarketing calls, for sales of products or services, made from landlines. Since March 10, operators have been required to adopt the measure in cell phone calls.

This Thursday (4), Anatel’s council determined that the technical areas should adopt measures to propose a specific numerical prefix also for collection activities.

The agency’s board also approved in June a resolution that reduces and simplifies the sector’s regulatory burden. The so-called Regulatory Guillotine revoked 44 of the 280 regulations in force at Anatel.

Among the revoked regulations is the distribution of free telephone directories by fixed telephony concessionaires. Vicente Aquino, member of the board and rapporteur of the proposal, said that the resolution will provide simplification, transparency and discourage the practice of abusive telemarketing.

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