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The Truth About Cell Phones and the National Do Not Call Registry

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Contrary to re-circulating email:

  • There is no new cell phone national do not call database. There is only one National Do Not Call Registry. It is operated by the Federal Trade Commission and covers both cell and landline phone numbers.
  • Registering your cell or landline phone number is free. Once registered, a number stays on the Do Not Call Registry until the registration is canceled or service for the number is discontinued.
  • There is no deadline for registering a phone number on the Do Not Call Registry.


This service did curtail telemarketing calls to my land line but did not completely stop them. I recently registered my cell phone and waiting to see if it does any good.

Why are callers allowed to use false caller ID #s. If that was illigal then the true phone number calling could be seen and reported, and traced. I'm tired of trying to find the callers number on redial call back of ID # only to hear "that number is not in service" Seems an easy fix Mr. FTC/FCC

Just review the FTC Enforcement action reported-SO FAR 1, that is ONE, yes only 1 this year. No wonder my phone is costantly receiving unwanted calls many times EVERY DAY!! Way to go FTC!!

Do everything to tie up their lines like talking to their represenatives with the the same BS they give you or just lay your phone down and wait for the beeping to start the hang up. If everyone did this they soon would be out of business.

In addition to the card service jerks, the free security system folks are just as bad. I too am on the DNC list & have filled out complaints to my state atty gen. No action of course. The worst is when the phone # pops up as a local company but it's "them." I called one of the #'s & it turned out they had used a real person's #. Disgusting.

I was very crude & rude for awhile but recd a death threat from the jerk on the other end. We now just try to bust their chops. We talk to them in a foreign languge or gibberish. We answer & then ask them to hold, put down the phone, pick it up again, ask them to hold. We see how look we can keep them on the line. Act like you are interested but suddenly can't hear what they are saying. These games can be fun for our side.

Get yourself a whistle and use it when you get unwanted calls

Best advice so far!

I have read from someone who used to be a telemarketer that if someone is really nasty or rude to them they pass around their number to the others and have everyone call them.

Here is my story.
I NEVER give my cell number out, i have a fake phone number that i use for EVERYTHING, i never got any telemarketing calls. It was great.
So, the FAKE DO NOT CALL LIST comes out, a few years later i add my cell number to it, within one month i started getting TONS of calls, i was furious.
So, i took my cell off the DNC registry, it took about 6 months but the calls dried up. I rarely get calls now.
I DO BLAME THE GOV, they SELL the call list to anyone! They do not require a USA business check to sell it, so, they are profiting from OUR numbers, they LOVE this list and encourage all to put there numbers on it. They have more info on you and there making money selling to scam companies.
If you want privacy get your NUMBER OFF THE LIST, wait for about 6 months and come back here and tell me how your calls stopped to.
What have you got to lose? Your being flooded with calls now, well im not, not anymore!

what can be done to stop "robo" calls including ones from politicians?

Don't put it on your voter registration. That's where they get all the numbers for politicians to call.

I have been on the DNC list since its inception. What a letdown it has been! The best thing I do is just screen the calls. If I recognize the Caller ID, I pick up. But otherwise I let whoever is calling leave a message. Most telemarketers don't leave messages. I also have the phone on 7 rings and most telemarketers give up long before the 7th ring. It is all still aggravating though. The phone companies need to come up with something since the government is such a letdown.

Dear FTC - please find a few aggregious and non-aggregious cases to prosecute on scammers. Make an example, let telemarketers know they need to take the DNC list seriously. It worked for music infringement i.e. Napster. Let 'em know no one is exempt or "under the radar" and they can be hit with a huge fine at any time. Thanks.

How do you enter a number when it comes up "out of area'? I'v been putting my number in this data base for years and not one call has stopped coming it. I am truly beginning to think that this is a con to make us think you are doing something for the public. Its a big joke.

I feel everyone's pain. Unfortunately asking the FTC to control robocalls is the same as asking your Public Utility Commission to control your utility rates. It is almost impossible and not in their best interest. The laws are written so broadly as to give almost everyone a way to legally bypass them. Political calls would be a great example.

Don't: answer any call that doesn't have a name attached and leaves a message from a human.
Anything else confirms that they found a working number.
Do: Bury your elected Reps. and the FTC with email, letters and phone calls until they respond.

What do you do when they start calling when you are asleep? We deactivate the phone before bed time....Some life..

Contrary to the statement above saying, "No numbers on the Do Not Call Registry are being released to telemarketers", the telemarketer is required to download the list to scrub their list with. Once they download the list, an unscrupulous telemarketer will use the downloaded list to make calls.

Never in a million years should you ever register a cell numbers on the DNC, because you change it from an unlisted number to a number that is now on this list that telemarketers are supposed to download.

Do Not Call Registry? What about the sms services, "Do not send sms Registry" (short messaging system). One of the worse spammers is T-mobile company i got on average 8 sms per month from them. that's like 2 per week.

Threaten your provider that you will change service provider. They are the ones making money on your phone! Follow the money !!!

answer the calls and ask stupid questions. If the interest goes to 7.75 what would my payment be if i make no more purchases until july 2015. If interest drops to 6.75 what would they be and so on. they catch on quick you are jackin with them.

I just put my phone on one ring only and just call back the person I want to talk to

The FTC is to blame. They could easily make reporting complaints much more convenient by having a key on the phone such *99 to instantly report a scam call. They choose not to do this.

If you get a call from someone soliciting or spamming you, they must identify who they are and why they're calling. Get there full name, identification, record them on your cell phone, and once done, let them know you have recorded the entire call, that you are registered on DNC, and that you are now reporting their call with evidence to FTC. Let them curse and act like jerks all they want, but once you have all the evidence from the recording, tell them have wonderful day and that you have recorded the call so you can hand this off as part of the police report and evidence for the FTC. After the call ask your phone company to block them. *WE ALL HATE SPAMMERS AND ILLEGAL THREATS FROM FAKE COLLECTION COMPANIES*

What makes you think they would comply with rules where "they must identify who they are and why they're calling"? Have you had success with this?

Sue them under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. Some people make a living at that. Google search how to sue.

I thought the amount of scam calls would go down not up when I registered my number. I am getting calls from scammers offering healthcare (for my deceased relrelative), car insuranace renewal (I don't drive never have), bounced checks ( for bills paid in cash) credit card offers (in my dogs name), debt collector about a Tmobile account ( I never had )just to name a few. Can't anything be done to stop this?

OOPS! I just cleaned up a paper file folder and saw that my original Do Not Call was filed in 2003 and expired in 2008. I just re-registered, and now I wonder if my tel No will generate unwanted calls. Anyway, here's what I do to unwanted calls: I just say, "Tell me all about it," and then I put the phone down on the countertop and hang up 15 mins later. OR: I ask the name of the company they represent, ask for its telephone number, tell the caller that I have recorded it, and say that I will never do any business with that company. If everyone did this or something similar, solicitous phone calls would cease. Then watch your mailbox...

I have a cell phone for medical reasons, I am awaiting a call to recieve a kidney transplant. I am tired of my cell phone minutes being wasted while I am hooked up to a dialsysis machine. What good is this registery, if the Government will not prosecute these people ? Just another example of how inept our Federal Government really is !!

1) Remember, the "Do Not Call List" ONLY covers solicitors that use a phone book or phone number listing with your name!
2) Many calls may show up with the number only because it's a nurse calling from an unlisted extension at the doctor's office, for example -- only the MAIN number's show up as "Dr. Ralph Doe".
3) Year ago I was a telephone solicitor and we didn't use phone books or listings with names -- we'd have a "random number list". For example -- 217-555-1234; 217-555-1235; 217-555-1236; etc. If they're calling randomly, it doesn't matter if you're on the list or not.
4) I also worked for a nationwide classic car magazine. We'd contact the DMV and get a list of all older cars that could be considered classics, say before 1980. The company'd pay a certain amount and get a list of the cars, and their owners and contact info -- MANY places sell lists like this.
5) Leaving YOUR phone off the hook doesn't accomplish anything -- if you don't speak to them within 10-15 seconds, THE CALLER will just hang up and they've freed their line while YOURS is still off the hook and tied up so no one can call YOU!
6) Most solicitors are required to make a certain number of calls each day, this is probably why, many times, you're phone will ring and no one will be there. They're just trying to get their quota of calls in.
7) If it's a large company, everything is computerized. There's a "queue" of phone numbers waiting to be called. As each telemarketer hangs up, the next calls AUTOMATICALLY goes to them, they don't dial the number and, sometimes, it takes 5-10 seconds for them to actually "get" the call and speak. It's the automated system that's causing those problems.
*** Point is: Even though you've registered with the Do Not Call List, it doesn't mean you won't get calls. It only means you won't get CERTAIN CALLS! ANYTIME you write your number down, anyplace, or give it to ANYONE, that's a potential unsolicited phone call.

I sent an email to the FBI. Someone has got to be able to track these a-holes down and stop them.

And these people that make the calls? How can they live with themselves?!

Scammers don't have what we call a conscience.
They live very easily with themselves.
Not everyone is raised with morals, some of these people were probably raised in hellish conditions, etc., etc.
I hate em too. Just keep trying is all we can do.
Thanks for several new ideas people. Let's bury these charletons.

2-3 phone calls a day for several weeks now from "GE Home Security". I have filed a dozen or more complaints on the FTC web site. They keep calling anyway. The spoofed caller ID number changes every few days.

It should be a crime to spoof a caller ID phone number. It should be made impossible to do in fact.

The do not call lost is another governmental agency that just eats tax money and makes some people feel good and is worthless. Only honest people obey laws.
We can stop all of this ourselves. I have 4 ring tones on my phone. 1 for my wife 2. for the rest of family 3 people I want to hear from and 4 all the rest. I answer the first three those are people programmed in my phone. If I add a name i'll put them in either 2 or 3. I expect anyone else to leave me a message and I'll call them back when I want to. I expect the same reaction when I call anyone. I'll leave a message and wait to be called back. If we all started do that instead of complaining then this stuff would stop. I am getting a whole lot less calls of late. I always leave my phone in the other room at night unless I know someone may need me. my entire family knows that no matter what the news is it will have to wait until morning. I wish they could fix it that if a call ID isn't supplied then my phone won't ring. They only do this stuff because we have been conditioned to answer the phone when it ring. Decondition yourself.

Don't answer the phone. Let it go to voice mail. I used to get 10 calls a day but now I just get one or two every other.

Everyone needs to check out how easy it is to buy the do not call registry.
Yes, this registry has single handedly made it possible for every scammer on the PLANET have our phone numbers.
So, the next step is to get a bill passed that holds the phone companys responsible for selling numbers overseas. Also if a company harrass's anyone then the phone company needs to be held responsible if they dont shut there phones off and not allow them to have another. We need some harsh laws and rules here now. I hate my phone, what was once enjoyable is now something i feel i have lost all my privacy. And meanwhile OUR GOV is still making money selling our numbers!

Step 1 - Never answer toll free numbers or area codes you don't recognize.
Step 2 - Check to see if your phone service has selective call forwarding. If so, enter the spam numbers from your caller id, then forward those numbers to your favorite politician or government agency. You'll need to check your caller id every couple of weeks and update your list.

Here's the deal. As others have stated over and over, the Government's Do Not Call Registry is a total joke. Telemarketers and others ignore it. I don't use my cell phone often at all, but on my home landline, I finally had to get one of those devices that zaps all political robocalls, telemarketer calls (robocalls and otherwise), survey-taker calls, pfishing calls (You know, like "Hi, I'm Rachael with Credit Card Services, etc.), and all other unwanted calls. We were getting endless calls per week, morning , noon and night. I researched these devices thoroughly and ended up with one that actually works and is easy to use. Very easy. Seriously, this is about all you can do because the No Call List is a joke. This device does what the No Call List was SUPPOSED to do. It works great. Ah, blessed silence!

The Do Not Call Registry is mostly ineffective now that "spoofing" services (e.g. Spoofcard, Spooftel, etc.) are allowed to operate. Spoofed calls are made using random, unused numbers by telemarketers and criminals. Calls typically originate through the voice over internet protocol (VoIP) and cannot be traced without significant effort by law enforcement. The Federal government tried to address this by passing the "Truth in Caller ID Act of 2009". However, this law has very little effect in stopping those that intend to deceive or cause harm to others. You can block a spoofed number only to see another one show up on caller ID. This needs to be fixed at the federal level... if it's even possible.

Those of you who post on here claiming that when you receive a recorded scammer call such as one from "Card Services", you try to get a live person on the line, and then engage them in conversation attempting to waste their time, might want to re-think this idea. I used to think that wasting their time was a good idea too, not thinking that they already have your telephone number in front of them, and after I managed to keep one scammer on the line for over 10 minutes, and told him to get screwed when we got to the credit card number part, he started giving my number out to other people who were trying to get their number removed from their calling list, claiming that they had to call this (my) number to get their number removed. Needless to say I spent an entertaining afternoon and evening receiving calls from folks all across the country trying to have their number removed from a scammers call list.

These people are scum, and only looking for credit card numbers. And the FTC and State DNC personnel are not going to do anything about it. One earlier poster was quite correct; the people that staff these offices are an extreme waste of taxpayer money.

call the credit bureau and get put on the fraud alert. this will stop the credit card aps being mailed out and protect your credit.

I have a landline and I let all calls go to voicemail which my message states that the party at this number is on the do not call registry and doesn't accept telephone solicitation calls of any type. All others leave a message, That way I can screen the calls and put them on notice. There is a sense of satisfaction in that I don't have to deal with them.

Do not give up. Today I received more calls, five from a same person saying they were with Windows of Microsoft about my Computer sending them errors.Finally today I asked for verification numbers because they always came up Unknown Name, Unknown Number. Although this company had a website that needed to be translated to English (a big help there) I finally for an area code 205 and area code 703 Caller ID'd numbers to file a complaint with.Now if those are traceable I can see justice done on them for my repeated but ignored "I am on the do not call list" statements and "not interested" ones I made to them.Perhaps they will have interest in who is calling them from here,rather than who they keep calling at their telemarketing,misrepresenting company places I finally identified.Ask for call back verification phone numbers of who they are, then say you will return their call when you reach them. It works.

DW, when I mention the do not call registry they immediately hang up, except for the one I reported. I did not like it because they pretended to be a company all computer people know and have in some form or another. I did not want others bothered by this group for that reason. It is my first time the do not call did not work. Next time I say it, I will simply hang up on whoever it is that is calling, the do not call I will say to them, will let them know why in very loud words...spoken softly...before the dial tone in their ear!!!

I've been receiving calls where the phone rings and there is no one there, but the signal indicating that the call is being recorded is heard every second or two. This can go on for a couple of minutes, tying up the line. I cannot disconnect the call when hanging up, even though I try several times, hit the # key and others many times. These calls will be received again every 5 to 10 minutes for an hour and more.

Telemarketers will never stop no matter what. They call my house from 5 - 10+ times a day, Even late at night. I have Caller ID and the name and number come up unknown 90% of the time. Phone companies probably getting paid off to keep there mouth closed about these calls.

I just screw with these people when I have time. I love the car warranty calls. They've been calling me about a car I got rid of 5 years ago! And they never update their records, so they'll never remember you screwed with them. I like the card services people too. I've tormented them so badly over the years. I was mimicking one woman's accent the other day, pretending like I was of another nationality, and she said "OK, why don't you go find someone else to play wit." was classic.

I have been getting these call for years like many of you. The thing that really scares me is that today while at Burger King with my kids, I received 2 calls in a row (334-798-0784) and then (605-865-2870). Shortly after the calls I was leaving and noticed a silver car with paper temp plates. The man was turk-ish just sitting in his car staring at me and kids. I am concerned that this may have something to do with the calls. They are not making any money with the scams but they may be collecting data and spying on us!

The only thing I see that we can do, is to all get together and tell the phone companies that I got 25 of these calls this month, so I am not paying the bill. I got 3 this month, so I will pay 2/3 of the bill. You would need thousands of people to do this. Once we started to financially cripple the phone company as a whole, they will address the situation pretty quick.

Like everyone here, we've had the same violation of our rights, by Microsoft....India wanting to take control of our computers??? Really, India? Can't you come up with better money making ideas? My ultimate solution...wait for it....SCREAM at the top of your lungs every time they call. Mysteriously, many of the "human" manned calls have stopped. Make sure it's not a legitimate call before you try this.

Is this list just to make us feel better? I've been on it for years and the calls have not even lessened. If the government really wants to lessen the national debt maybe they should start handing out more fines. I give them names and numbers every week and I know from looking up numbers other people are reporting the same callers.


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