The Arkansas state Senate has passed a bill that would make spoofing a phone number a felony offense punishable by up to six years in prison and a fine of $10,000.
The bill — Senate Bill 514 — passed unanimously in the Senate and now moves to the state House of Representatives for consideration. One state Senator said his wife told him not to come home if he did not vote in favor of the bill.
Currently, spoofing — in which a caller uses a fake number or ID information as a means of getting someone to pick up the phone — is a misdemeanor in Arkansas.
The bill appears to only deal with people making or transmitting a “telephone solicitation,” but does not define what constitutes a solicitation for the purposes of this law.
Under the proposed legislation, carriers would be required to annually submit a report to the Arkansas Public Service Commission detailing the measures they have undertaken to identify and prevent spam calls and robocalls from being placed. The intention is to aggregate the measures the carriers are putting into place to develop a set of best practices that could be used to further the fight against robocalls.