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Verizon launches anti-spam call service with $2.99 subscription fee

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It feels like spam phone calls are out of control these days, and Verizon launched a new service to help cut down on the problem.

Verizon’s new service, “Verizon Caller Name ID,” is an app that will let customers know when an incoming call is likely a robocall or spam. But there’s a catch—Verizon’s service includes a $2.99 per month subscription fee.

Customers can also get a free trial of the service to see if they like it. It’s worth pointing out that rival carriers T-Mobile and AT&T offer similar services for free.

Customers with the T-Mobile One plan get spam warnings at the network level for no charge, and the service is expected to expand to other T-Mobile plans. Customers don’t have to install an app for T-Mobile’s service.

Like Verizon, AT&T also launched an app to combat the problem. The AT&T service, “Call Protect,” is free to postpaid wireless customers with iPhone 6 and above or eligible Android smartphones and HD Voice. The carrier launched the service in December.

Fraudulent calls are one of the biggest complaints among wireless customers, and the Federal Communications Commission said robocalls are the top source of consumer complaints for the agency.

In March, the FCC passed a new rule proposal that’s expected to give carriers more leeway to stop annoying spam calls and caller ID “spoofing” (a practice that changes caller ID to make it look like a call is coming from a different number). The proposal must undergo public review before the commission takes a final vote.

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