This week, Hiya hosted key leadership from the Federal Communications Commission in our Seattle headquarter offices. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, Commissioner Mignon Clyburn and Commissioner Ajit Pai all came to visit for a tour and Q&A session.
As the global leader in phone spam protection, it was a nice opportunity for us to introduce our talented team and showcase our work. This included a tour of our newly built network operations center, which provided an insider’s view into how we monitor, analyze and leverage our comprehensive data set to power the products we build.
Recently, the FCC has been recognized for bringing the incessant robocall problem to light and its important role in mobilizing the industry to take action. Robocalls have become a huge consumer problem with more than 10 billion robocalls made to U.S. phone numbers since the beginning of 2016. On July 22, Chairman Wheeler sent letters to all major carriers, demanding actionable plans to address the robocall issue. Soon after, a Robocall Strike Force was created to fight the robocall epidemic, with AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson personally at the helm.
I applaud both the FCC and the Strike Force for their efforts. A good portion of the industry is consequently moving at light speed to solve the problem for consumers. Hiya’s most recent contribution was our launch of Hiya Cloud, which helps carriers prevent robo and other unwanted calls. By integrating at the carrier network level, Hiya Cloud blocks unwanted calls before they reach a user’s phone, regardless of the device type or operating system.
It is our hope that the current momentum continues and that free market forces will motivate businesses to do the right thing. In the long run, what is good for consumers is good for business. Furthermore, I hope that the currently proposed anti-robocall legislation will not be the final answer. The best solution for both carriers and consumers will not be prescribed via inflexible regulation. What’s smart today could have unintended consequences further down the road. Robocallers and fraudsters are remarkably nimble in their tactics, and we need to counter them with agile innovation and flexible business models for years to come.
I believe our meetings this week were insightful for both parties. The FCC is remarkably informed and up-to-speed on the robocall problem, and Chairman Wheeler personally demonstrates great interest in the subject and knowledge of underlying technology. With the FCC’s ongoing support and interest, I feel even more confident that the phone spam and robocaller problem will be eliminated.