The FCC’s Ajit Pai said in a letter to two senators that he was proposing “to rebuild and re-engineer” the commission’s electronic comment system “to institute appropriate safeguards against abusive conduct.”
Pai’s move comes after The Wall Street Journal uncovered thousands of fraudulent comments on regulatory dockets at five federal agencies, including the FCC—some using what appear to be stolen identities posted by computers programmed to pile comments onto the dockets.
The Journal contacted thousands of people who said they didn’t draft or authorize comments that were posted in their names. Pai cited 7.5 million identical comments that came from 50,000 individuals whose addresses didn’t appear to exist.
Among the changes proposed by the senators and accepted by Mr. Pai was to require commenters to fill out a Captcha—a system designed to prove humans rather than bots provided the information.