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Robocall Scams Push Medical Alert Systems

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The latest in unwelcome, illegal, prerecorded sales calls are from scammers pitching a safety alert system for older adults.

The callers spoof a phone number so it looks like a local call on caller ID. If you pick up, you’ll hear a message saying you’re eligible for an alert system, or system upgrade, or that someone bought a system for you. The message asks you to “press one” on your phone to talk to a live operator, who will quickly ask for a bank account, credit card, or Medicare number, and maybe an address, to “expedite shipping and handling.”

The best response? Don't press a number, and don’t speak to a live operator. People who gave their information have seen monthly charges of $35 and up for that “free” system. If you get a call with a recorded sales message and you haven't given the company your written permission to call, the call is illegal. Since the call itself is illegal, you can bet the offer is a scam. If you gave information to one of these callers, check your account statements. If you find unexpected charges, ask your bank or credit card company to remove them. Finally, contact the FTC online or at 1-888-382-1222 to report your experience.

Hang Up on Robocalls

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I get these calls from every state imaginable. When I call the numbers back - cannot be completed as dialed. These were the two from just today. I'm not even 40???

WA - 425-615-6783; MD - 410-985-6570

I've been on the Do Not Call list for years but now that I've turned 60 I'm getting these calls ALL THE TIME. They start out, "Hello Seniors!" and they're for a medical alert system. Every time I get one I block the number but they continue to call using different numbers. DO NOT TELL ME THE FTC CANNOT IDENTIFY WHO THEY ARE AND SHUT THEM DOWN!!!! And saying "hang up" is like the police telling us to ignore people who bang on our door at all hours of the day and night. DO YOUR JOB AND GET RID OF THIS NUISANCE!!! If the FTC isn't going to do anything, and clearly they are not, seeing how far back these complaints go - then perhaps the FTC should be dissolved as completely useless.

Calls from 804-250-9647, 928-638-4527, 417-204-5238, 360-300-4578, 360-797-8535, 425-615-6783, 432-586-9589

When I press one, it hangs up. Dozens of times, only once did I actually speak to a live person who promised to remove me from their list, but of course, it didn't happen.

I always press 1 and hope to speak to someone. Then I do one of three things:
1) try to keep them on the line as long as possible by responding slowly to their requests, giving them fake credit card numbers (visa starts with 4, MC with 5), and generally wasting their time
2) Go the route of "Is your mother proud of what you do for a living? Scamming people out of their savings." or "On career day at school, does your child say 'My (mother/father) is a crook who scams people out of their money'"
3) speak very quietly and then blow a really loud whistle

Attention seniors is a 2 time a day call to me. Different number on caller id every time...i screwed with them for months now it hangs up when i press 1 to speak with a operator...they aint no fun anymore.

This company calls me twice a day minimum!!! I actually got a live person and asked them to delete my number, but obviously they didn't as the person just hung up on me. Does anyone have a site or number to take get them to take them off your list??

If you already registered your phone number at donotcall.gov, you can go back to that site and file a complaint. You can also contact your state Attorney General and local consumer protection agencies.

i blow a whistle in there ear

I have been getting calls from them 2 to 3 times per day for the last 4 months. I am in sales myself and almost obligated to pick up every call even if I dont know the number. I travel to Europe at least 4 times a year and getting a call at 2am in the morning in Paris is just the icing on the cake. This is nuts!!! FTC needs to do what they are supposed to do.

so who is it that we can turn to, to turn up the heat on the gov officials supposedly their to serve us. id be willing to use my 11 1/2 boot :-)

These are occurring daily for me from (304) 263-5875. Always around the 2:00PM MDT time frame.

I think we should sue the fct for not doing their job

I’ve been getting SEVERAL of the unsolicited calls for the “Medical Alert System” on my mobile. I often travel overseas and inadvertently answering these calls cost me a lot of money. I use my mobile number for business and I have to answer calls even from unknown numbers. It’s hard to believe that FTC is unable to shut down the “Medical Alert Systems” or “Rachels” with “Cardservices International” within hours or days of the start of those massive scams. FTC is an impotent bureaucracy that doesn’t understand that it will be known to people only by what it’s not willing to do to protect citizens. We don’t need FTC’s alerts and advice on how to deal with Robocalls. We simply need FTC take immediate, effective action against the scammer. FTC could if it wanted to and had the most basic connection with the citizens it is supposedly serving.

Here's a thought: Maybe "Bridget Small, Consumer Education Specialist at the FTC" and her colleagues should get off their collective rear ends and demand legislation to make spoofing numbers ILLEGAL. Anyone who legitimately NEEDS a blocked or camouflaged # (some doctors for example) should have to register with the FTC and/or their service provider--BUT NO ONE should be allowed to use a public utility and be "anonymous." Enough already! And I don't believe for a second that that the FTC "can't find" these scammers. If these guys were pushing kiddie porn (instead of alert systems), the FBI would be on their door steps in 15 minutes. How about some accountability for all of the taxes we pay to these agencies??

Defund the FTC. What is the point of having this organization if they won't do their job. I don't need them. I have received 1,000's of these phone calls and reported them for a couple of years, which is a complete waste of time.

You are wasting your time with the FTC. Their approach to you the taxpayer is no different than the scammers. So flood the FTC.

I am getting the "Hello Seniors" call two or three times a day from various numbers....after no success scamming me why do they keep calling?

Free medical alert pendant and $3,000.00 in grocery coupons NBC Comm Net Co 650-2772601. SCAM

GE Security a/d/b/a Web Service Co 845-940-7972 free home security system. SCAM

What is the point of this FTC site if they have not done a single thing to crack down this scammers. I've getting this call daily, and blocked them, but no use because they use different number every time. I've reported to do not call registry, complained to FTC, but they have done nothing in the last 3 year. So sad.

The Robocalls information page has details about the FTC’s Robocalls Initiative,  a list of some recent cases against companies that mis-used robocalls, and information about refunds to consumers.

Bridget,FTC site is a waste of time. Just the cases are few and far between. We need to change the law so those caught using robocalls have their hand cut off on the first offense. After a couple of them lose their hand then the others will learn

You receive exactly what you're promosed. You get the system for free and you pay for the monitoring of the system.

These posts are depressing.

The folksy male voice says, "Hello Seniors, due to new health care regulations, you are now eligible to receive a personal medical alert system at no cost to you. Since you've already been referred to by a friend or family member, we have a system waiting to be shipped out to you. Press 1 now to receive your personal medical alert system and by taking advantage today you'll also receive $1,000 in grocery saving coupons plus a 75% prescription discount card. Again, press 1 now to receive your personal medical alert system."

Can we find somebody to sue? This crap has to S T O P !!!!!!!!!

The call here was from tea Neck, NJ and it was 201-371-4044.

These people call me almost every day. The do not call list is just another government waste of money.

I guess the FTC is unable to figure out how to stop this. I get these calls from a variety of numbers and even if I do press 1 to give somebody an earful, the phone hangs up. I did get a real person once and they hung up as soon as I said I wanted to know where they got my number. I'm done with complaining via do-not-call.gov.

If you get illegal sales calls or robocalls, it's best to ignore them. Don't interact in any way. Don’t press buttons to be taken off the call list or to talk to a live person or call back. That just leads to more calls.  You can report your experience at ftc.gov/complaint. The FTC uses complaint data to identify illegal callers based on calling patterns.

Got another call today from "Arizona" 928-638-4527. Reported it once again on Donotcall. I don't know why I bother doing it; it doesn't work.

I am getting these calls too, the same as Kannada posted above, and my concern is that my number was a number given to a legit Life Alert CO so that I would receive a call in case my client had a fall or needed assistance. I am wondering if Life Alert sold my information?

Make illegal auto dial systems, ghost programs and give the death penalty to whoever uses such systems or makes them. Require phone banks to ask first how you got to them. They (the operator) should be required to report to the FCC calls that were directed to them by robocall.

I agree with all above. Maybe they should get rid of the FTCs 'Do Not Call' section and privatize it. Possibly our tax money would do more than it's doing now........nothing!

I have tried every trick in the book to get them to leave us alone... They call both cell and landline... I block the number on cell but they just use another number which sometimes is my own... calling myself.. I am so tired of this calling.. between the security system offer, Rachel at Credit card service and the bogus foreign third world country yo yos saying they are Microsoft computer technicans...There is nothing I won't try to get them to leave us alone....

I'm from the government and I'm here to help you. The FTC is such a joke. I regularly get calls from the Pakistani division of Microsoft, Amber from Credit Card Services and USA Alert Systems. Been going on for years. Still waiting for an indictment. Last time I checked, the only skill the FTC has is to cash government payroll checks.

Keep receiving these same robo calls from 913-284-0503. Called the number back and it said it was disconnected/no longer in service. I have it blocked on my cell phone now, but SERIOUSLY FTC, someone needs to pursue these guys -- I have older parents and many older folks would fall for this scam.

i got so tired of these calls i followed through and i played along. I gave them a credit card number and I got a customer service number.

Company name is Lifewatch, their # is 800-716-1433, they are in Lynbrook, NY I'm going to start action against them. They have a street address and a horrible record. I'm not going to rest until they are out of business.

In the past you couldn't call them back, now you can. Do it, fax, call, annoy and impede their corruption.

I get these calls daily and the number changes. They are spoofing numbers from all over, for example, Barbados, Iowa, Texas, Chicago, Arizona, always changing. The first couple of dozen times they called I hit 9 to be removed or just ignored them. The first time I hit 1 the lady was courteous and said she would remove my number, several days have passed and I keep getting calls so today I hit 1 again and the guy immediately started insulting me. Someone needs to do something about these guys, the call today bordered on harassment.

You can report this to the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint.

If you press 1 or talk to unknown callers, or call them back, you may get more calls. If you respond, they know your number works and may continue calling, or share your number with others.

I tell the caller that if they report their crooked employer to the FTC that they will get $5,000. It's not true, but it shuts them up and makes them think. --bks

That would be a great idea for the FTC or FCC or whoever to implement. The live operators that you are connected to after the robot call would certainly roll over on their employers if they got even a relatively meager monetary reward. $5K might be overkill. The only flaw is that the operators are probably as much in the dark about the people they work for as the victims they are helping to harass.

Trying to "opt-out" does nothing from personal experience. During the call I got today, I spoke to the person and told him that I was reporting him to the FCC because they did not honor my opt-out request. The guy said that there are different companies offering the same "free" medical alert systems. Maybe there's a spammer starter kit that includes the recorded message and the guy was telling the truth. Either way, there's still a bunch of illegal things about the call.

Also, when he read my number that they called, I didn't recognize it. But whatever number they dialed rang my phone.

I live in GA, and received Medical Alert call from 707-677-8583, CA. I have received several of these, but spread out over weeks apart. I press 1 and speak to a live agent, I put my phone on speak and let them deliver their whole sales pitch and then tell them I don't want one. Really pisses them off because every minute on the phone with a non-buyer is costing them money.

I'm curious if they are getting lists from AARP?

I am getting these calls on most of the lines I have used as personal phones. This includes cell phones and work phones.
I would guess that we are now to the point that the fine folks at our ISP, browser and search engine companies (data aggregators) are selling the information and enabling most of these calls.
Beyond this vector of attack, it is very easy to have call centers making virtually free calls to every number, simply to see if the line is working, and even better if it is answered.
Once a number is thusly discovered, it can be sold to call centers, including crooks, spammers and people I would only like to surprise with a visit by the police.
Stop griping about the FTC, and any other federal agencies. They cannot do much more until Congress is forced to enact laws and regulations that allow better interception of these calls.
Remember that if you don't force your legislators and Attorneys General to act, we all can only Pin the Responsibility on ourselves.

I usually mess with them and they get upset. It makes for hours of fun.

The best way I have found to handle them is talk to them! Waste as much of their time as possible. Keep them on the phone as long as I can. They think they are going to make a sale, when in the end, I'm the one scamming them. Makes them mad!! I love it!!

This number ("Unavailable"/646-257-3539) called a few minutes ago, hawking back braces. I just hung up on them as I do all other telecriminals.

I got a call this morning in a recorded message with an elderly man's extremely friendly voice saying "hello seniors." It goes on to say that I was referred to them by a friend for their medical alert system. You have the option of pressing a number to talk to someone or another number to opt out. Like I do with all robocalls, I don't press any numbers. I stay on the phone until eventually (after about 30 seconds) it rings a couple of times and there is a recorded message that your call cannot be completed as dialed. The message repeats once, and then I hang up. This method seems to mess up their automated dialing system for calling my number. Since the call came from the 914 area code, I also added it to my call rejection list.

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