CUNA backs FCC proposal to block illegal text messages

June 7, 2023

CUNA and other organizations support the Federal Communications Commission’s efforts to identify and implement solutions to stop bad actors from sending fraudulent texts, CUNA wrote to the FCC Wednesday. CUNA’s comments were sent in reply to previous comments on the FCC’s proposal on targeting and eliminating unlawful text messages.

“Specifically, we support the Commission’s proposal to require terminating mobile wireless providers to investigate and potentially block texts from a sender after they are on notice from the Commission that the sender is transmitting suspected illegal texts,” the letter reads. “We also urge the Commission to apply this requirement to entities that originate text messages, as these entities are best positioned to stop illegal texts from being sent in the first place.”

CUNA and the organizations also urge the FCC to

  • Finalize a requirement that text messages be authenticated and set a deadline for the development and mandatory implementation of a text message authentication solution.
  • Work with mobile wireless providers and other entities involved in the texting ecosystem to design an authentication framework that prevents bad actors from successfully sending text messages that impersonate legitimate companies, while at the same time ensuring that text messages from legitimate companies are not blocked.
  • Define the term “logically and topically associated” broadly enough to discourage litigation targeting existing relationships that banks, credit unions, and other financial services providers have with third parties that expand the range of financial products available to consumers.
  • Revise the proposed text to reflect that consumers may provide their consent to be called through means other than a webpage, including, but not limited to, checking a box on a mobile application, verbally consenting during a recorded phone call, or in writing.