LANSING – Attorney General Dana Nessel joined with 50 other attorneys general and 12 telecommunication companies to fight illegal robocalls with the Anti-Robocall Principles agreement.

“This is a major step forward in combating robocalls in Michigan and across the country,” Nessel said in a statement Friday. “Far too many residents fall victim to illegal robocall scams and we cannot wait any longer to address this egregious public nuisance. This should serve as a notice to bad actors that my colleagues, the phone companies and I will be relentless in our efforts to stop these predatory calls.”

Joining the agreement, which hopes to better protect people from illegal robocalls and make it easier for states to investigate and prosecute them, are AT&T, Bandwidth, CenturyLink, Charter, Comcast, Consolidated, Frontier, Sprint, T-Mobile, US Cellular, Verizon and Windstream.

The principles focus on prevention and enforcement by requiring phone companies to implement call-blocking technology at the network level at no cost to customers, establish additional free and easy-to-use call blocking and labeling tools for customers, implement technology that authenticates callers are coming from a valid source and by monitoring service networks for illegal robocall traffic.

Phone companies have also agreed to help states enforce anti-robocall protocols by implementing “Know Your Customer” policies so that it becomes more difficult for bad actors to gain access to providers’ networks, investigating and taking action against suspicious network traffic and robocallers – including notifying law enforcement and state Attorneys General, working with law enforcement, including state Attorneys General, to trace the origins of illegal robocalls and by requiring phone companies they contract with to cooperate in traceback identification.