The U.S. Federal Communications Commission is demanding that phone companies do more to fight "robocalls" and other spam phone calls — or else.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai sent a letter to more than a dozen U.S. carriers Monday telling them to adopt a robust call authentication system to prevent illegal caller ID spoofing.
And if that system isn't up and running by next year, he said the FCC will "take action."
Pai said in a statement: "Combatting illegal robocalls is our top consumer priority at the FCC. That's why we need call authentication to become a reality — it's the best way to ensure that consumers can answer their phones with confidence."
Caller ID spoofing is a growing problem in the U.S., and the FCC has been working to crack down on it. Earlier this year, the agency fined a Florida man $120 million for making 96 million robocalls in 2016.