Yesterday, AT&T said it would add "automatic fraud blocking and suspected callback notifications" to mobile phone lines at no extra cost, but the operator still puts restrictions on spam calls unless customers pay extra.
"New consumer lines for AT & T Mobility come with the anti-robocall service. Millions of existing AT&T customers will also have it automatically added to their accounts over the coming months," said AT & T's announcement. 1
Call Protect has been available since 2016, but only if customers have chosen it. added AT&T telephone lines automatically.
The Federal Communications Commission voted last month to let the telephone companies block robocalls by default even when consumers have not chosen robo call block Carriers can activate robo call blocking "as long as customers are informed and have the opportunity to opt out of blocking," the FCC said at that time.
AT&T said that FCC votes are what allowed the operator to expand Call Protect to users without waiting for them to choose. The FCC decision "clarifies that the phone company providers can be offered by calling", AT&T says. "That means we can automatically provide you with the service, unless you reject, rather than first requesting you to download an app or go to your settings to "choose". "
Call Protect is not available to AT&T prepaid customers, but AT & T told Ars that it will be added automatically "to most consumers, postponed HD Voice lines" in the coming months. Customers will be notified via text message when the service is added. If you don't want to wait, AT&T says you can download the AT&T Call Protect app or activate Call Protect in the myAT & T account settings.
No automatic blocking of spam calls
As mentioned earlier, the service does not & # 39; t automatically blocks all override calls. Note that the AT&T announcement promised "automatic fraud blocking and suspected spam call notifications", but not automatic spam call blocking. Calling AT&T categorizes as "fraud," will not call your phone, but calls categorized as "spam" will call your phone despite coming up with a warning.
Fraud calls are, of course, those that AT&T suspects that the caller is trying to deceive the user. In contrast, "spam calls that a customer may consider to be a nuisance, but it is subjective for each customer," AT & T tells us. The AT&T Call Protect website further states that "Suspected spam may contain service messages and / or other allowed calls." AT&T says it identifies fraud and spam calls "through data analysis and network blocking, as well as customer reports."
There are two ways for AT&T customers to block these spam calls. The first way is cumbersome, but free, and the other way costs $ 4 a month, but automatically sends the spam calls to voicemail.
The free way is to create a personalized block list using the basic version of AT&T Call Protect service. But it requires manually adding unwanted numbers. Both iPhones and Android phones have built-in dialing features that work independently of the operator anyway.
For $ 4 per month, the premium version of AT & T adds Call Protect to "Custom Call Controls", an option that automatically sends suspected spaman calls to voicemail. Call Protect Plus also includes Enhanced Caller ID that identifies the name and location of the caller.
In June, FCC votes do not require operators to offer call blocking for free, although Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel had urged the Republican majority to mandate free robo call blocking.
AT & T said it will continue to offer the fee-based Call Protect Plus service, and has not promised any changes that would move spam blocking to free level. "The Call Protect Plus service will still be offered, but we want more to share in the coming months," says AT & T.