FTC offering $50,000 reward if you can stop the "robocalls" - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

FTC offering $50,000 reward if you can stop the "robocalls"

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The Federal Trade Commission is taking a new approach to getting rid of those unwanted marketing calls better known as "robocalls".

They're offering a $50,000 reward to whoever creates the best technology to stop consumers from getting those calls.

Robocalls are illegal, but the perpetrators have largely alluded the FTC, often ignoring the national "Do Not Call List."

This year alone nearly four million people filed complaints with the FTC, more than twice as many as two years ago.

"Changes in the technology over the past few years have made it extremely cheap and easy for people who don't want to follow the law," explains FTC staff attorney Kati Daffan.

To enter the contest go to Robocall.Challenge.gov and submit your idea by January.

One area consumers won't see relief: The political robocalls we get this time of year.

The FTC can't stop them because they're not considered a sales call.