The full Senate has given approval to a measure giving Oklahomans greater protection against a new kind of fraud known as caller ID spoofing. Sen. James A. Williamson is the author of Senate Bill 712, the “Anti-Caller ID Spoofing Act.” The Tulsa Republican said criminals use this technology to trick people into giving out information that can be used for identity theft and other crimes. The measure would make ID spoofing a misdemeanor offense punishable by up to a year in jail, a fine of up to $10,000, or both.
“Right now, you can log onto a website or call a 1-800 number, and for as little as ten bucks, you can purchase a service that you can use to change the number appearing on someone’s caller ID,” Williamson said. “Instead of seeing the actual number of the person calling, the caller can make it look like it’s a bank, a doctor’s office or anyone they want.”
Williamson said people receiving such calls don’t realize they’ve been “spoofed” and may inadvertently give the caller access to bank or credit card accounts, or give out other personal information that can be used by criminals. The service even enables the caller to disguise their voice.
“I’m concerned that older people are particularly vulnerable to this kind of scam, and I have a lot of seniors in my district in particular. I want to make sure they have some protection against these con artists,” Williamson said. “We already know people have used this technology for fraud and for harassing people. With SB 712, we can make this kind of fraud illegal.”