Anti-Spoofing Bill Would Protect Caller ID

April 28, 2007

The "PHONE" act, now working its way through Congress, would prevent faking caller ID data for malice or profit.

As Washington Post blogger Brian Krebs points out, caller ID spoofing is currently legal, and has been used for a variety of untoward purposes.

But here comes Congress to the rescue with the "Preventing Harassment through Outbound Number Enforcement (PHONE) Act of 2007." The bill has passed the house and come out of committee in the Senate and is awaiting a vote by that body.

An earlier attempt last year to fill this security hole failed to make it all the way. There were definite problems with that law , such as not addressing the problem of calls from abroad.

The PHONE act would not ban all spoofing, just that done with the intent to defraud or impersonate another without their consent. This would seem to excuse, for example, large corporations that call from India but use their main US phone number for the caller ID. There is also an exception for law enforcement.

Copyright 2007 by Ziff Davis Media, Distributed by United Press International

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