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FTC sues telemarketers over Do Not Call violations

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If you’re on the Do Not Call Registry, companies shouldn’t call you out of the blue to try and sell you something. In fact, it’s usually illegal.

The FTC continues to take action against companies and telemarketers that ignore the Registry. The latest example: today the FTC announced a complaint against Alliance Security, a home security system installation company, Alliance’s owner, Jasjit Gotra, and two of Alliance’s telemarketing firms, along with their owners. These two telemarketing firms — Defend America and Power Marketing Promotions — and their owners have agreed to settle the FTC’s charges.

Like with many illegal telemarketing operations, each call typically started with a prerecorded message asking people to press 1 or follow prompts. Anyone who did was then connected to a live telemarketer.

Even after receiving many complaints, the FTC says, the companies continued to call people whose numbers were on the Do Not Call Registry. Some people went as far as scheduling installation appointments just to tell Alliance in person to stop calling, the FTC alleges. Alliance Security and Gotra previously settled charges with the FTC in 2014 while doing business as Versatile Marketing Solutions.

You can learn more about the Do Not Call Registry in our FAQs. If a company doesn’t respect the Registry, report it. To add your number to the Do Not Call Registry, go to donotcall.gov or call 1-888-382-1222 from the phone you want to register.

What if you’re on the Registry and still getting bombarded by unwanted calls? Odds are, many of them are from scammers — and they don’t care about the Registry. Find out more about your options when it comes to blocking unwanted calls— and report the ones you get at ftc.gov/complaint. We take the phone numbers you report and release them each business day to help telecommunications carriers and other industry partners that are working on call blocking solutions. Your complaints also help law enforcement identify the people behind illegal calls. For tips on blocking unwanted calls, go to ftc.gov/calls, where you'll find graphics you can share with your friends and followers.

How to stop unwanted calls on your  mobile phone.

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So these fines that the FTC is collecting. Is the Fines being distributed to the public for the harassment? Is the fines being used in the court to fine the telemarketers?

I was wondering the same thing. It has been reported on the Do Not Call Registry's very own website and I quote "To date, the FTC has sued hundreds of companies and individuals who were responsible for placing unwanted calls, and has obtained over a billion dollars in judgments against violators." - My question is, where has that money gone? What about the billions of people who are harassed daily, they get nothing? It should at least explain where those billions of dollars go or how they get spent, it should be public information.

Perp walks in prime time will end it in weeks

I am finding these calls sound like a live human but they are in fact recordings and disconnect when they hear key words. Either that or they are pretending they don't hear you asking questions like the company name & phone # they are calling from. The numbers they call from are fake. Reporting the numbers is futile.

We are so sick of the telephone calls. X-finity could let us block 25, but they just use another "V" number and call back. The main reason I am writing to you, is we were watching TV, the phone nunber comes up on the screen, and we got 2 phone numbers after 9:00pm We are at our wits end. I thought they couldn't call after 9:00 pm? When my husband answered the phone several weeks ago, he told the guy to quit calling, the guy said no and they started cussing each other, which isn't like my husband. I have every phone number wrote down, especially after tonight. There has to be away to stop them? Thans for your time.

my suggestion based on what i do is simply block the number, reject it or just dont answer the phone when a non number calls u. they eventually give up. if i so happen to answer cause its a local number soon as i hear a voice say hi im calling or whatever i hang up the block. they go to voicemail. or use the CM app block list setting it reports the number to a community of ppl helping everyone avoid calls from the unwanted

The solution here is to completely outlaw ALL telemarketers. A $10,000 fine for any telemarketer call would solve the issue.

$10,000 isn't enough. Make it more like $250,000 or $500,000 and some prison time. Then you might have an effect.

I am 70 yrs old, live alone and have several major disabilities. I have at least 10 calls per day and I spend a lot of time daily to trying different ways to stop them but no matter what or how I try it never works. One of the calls that I get so upset about is a local # that calls me daily sometimes 6 times a day. The call starts off with a stupid song, Jingle Bells Taco Bells and then leaves a name and # number for me to call. I have asked numerous times for them not to call me but they still do and most of the time I immediately receive another call using a different local number. I do not know what else to do to stop the calls and hope someone to call that can stop them or tell me what else to try. I cannot cut my ringer down or off because I would not be able to hear my calls from all my Drs. nor my family that checks on me periodically all during the day. Please help me as all the stress causes some of my chronic health issues to esculate and noone shud have to go through this, either abled bodied or disabled. Your reply was the best reply I have read and to fine and or arrest these people is the only thing that is going to stop all these calls. Carol

Using local numbers is what scammers do. A local number is actually one of the biggest tipoffs that it is a scam. They purchase huge blocks of numbers, and use them for people in that area code. Get NOMOROBO or a similar application on your phone to weed these people out. And do NOT answer the phone for a number you do not recognize, ever. Anyone who has real business with you will leave a message. Good luck!

If you have a cell phone... if a cell phone is what you’re receiving these unwanted calls on, put all of your contacts on the emergency call list on your phone then, put your phone on do not disturb. Any phone number that is not on your emergency call list will not be heard by you. The unwanted call will still come through but , you won’t hear it. You’ll still be able to hear when your doctors, friends and family call because you’ve placed them on your emergency call list in your phone. This has solved my personal problem with unwanted calls.

I have been getting the warrant emails for three or more years . Ifreaked at first with first email i called and made payment plan then hung up i got to thinking and i reviwed the email then googled the name tons of info popped up i was pist i waited never sent a penntmy they called the very day i was suppoae to send it and the guy tried once again to intimidate me but didnt work for him the way he wanted i flipped on him i laid the u.s and state laws on him he coukdnt hardly get a word in

I wish I had seen this last November. Now I am locked in to a 5 year contract with Alliance.

I am reporting calls to the FTC for years, but these companies are still in business which tells me that the FTC does not care a lot.

Can someone please tell me what committee sets the rules for illegal scammers, robocallers and telemarketers? Why don't they call after 8:30pm? Why don't they call at 2:00am? All of these ILLEGAL services abide to these time of day call rules? Why? They are illegal to start with and the FTC has no jurisdiction to prosecute a third world country originator. So WHY are they following these guidelines? It's as if some entity makes them conform to this call rule...even though it is completely illegal anyway. Makes no sense to me, I can't figure it out. Someone or some group is behind this. Telephone Carriers?

Great point.

They DO call after 9 PM. They DO call at 5 AM. They probably use your Area Code to decide when to bother you with the calls..I have a 202 number (Washington DC) on my Federal mobile number, but live in CA, so my calls all start up at 5:01 AM.... HELP!!! Quality Health Care is the WORST!!

Can we add political and charitable callers to the law?

this do not call site doesn't work! Credit card services is the worst and seemingly can't be stopped. Come on folks!

I have been visiting with a friend for 2 days,her phone calls are awful these people calling from 864-862-3899 Fountain Inn SC keep calling back to back. I finally answered it & they stated that they were from Microsoft? I of course led them to believe I was interested so I could get info & I asked them their ID # MS### told me to go to my computer that they were receiving errors from my computer? Of course I then got mad knowing this was a scam I in return told them I worked for Microsoft & the call was being recorded of course it was not. They are so rude with their language, they called back 5 times in a row & it has been going on for days now like this even before answering this call. Something has to be done with these people being allowed to call like this & why should we have to pay to have a # blocked if were on the DNC? I am going to file a complaint now with the FTC in hopes that something can be done with these people. Beware all these people will never stop...

Of course the FTC rakes in hundreds of millions from claims while consumers aka VICTIMS get nothing. Thanks FTC we do all the work you take all the money. We should file a class action against the FTC

The problem with reporting a number is the robo-callers obviously have hundreds or thousands of outgoing numbers that are constantly changing. For example, I'll get a call from, let's say, 214-868-5555 and it's a scammer pretending to be Microsoft. But later that day or later in the week, I'll get a call from the same caller using the same number except for the last 4 digits. For example 214-868-5556. If I reported all these numbers on the registry (not a trivial task), I'd need a full-time assistant.

I am registered on no call lists through FCC, FTC and Missouri Attorney General. I also hve a well-known blocking device. I get 2 to 5 calls daily, mainly from spoofed number from small Missouri towns. For example, I'm quite sure that Rachel from Card Services does not operate out of Puxico, MO(5-18-18). As long as spoofed phone numbers are legal, the number of telemarketers using them will increase. I predict that within another year, 75% of telemarketer calls will be from spoofed numbers as AT&T and the company that sold me my blocking device tell me there is nothing they can do.

@justray - AMEN!!

My wife of 35 years has been dealing with severe pain and cancer. These calls everyday have interrupted her rest and sleep and our quiet time together. We receive legitimate phone calls from all over the country in relation to our business and also family, so we can't just stop taking phone calls because they are out of the area or that we don't recognize the number. These non-stop calls have been taking their toll on our health and well-being for a very long time now. The Do Not Call list is a joke.
We all need to band together. Call and write our congressman and government Representatives. Request them to fire the head of the FTC and the other people people in charge of bringing these people to Justice, and don't stop getting new people in these positions that promise to eliminate the perpetrators. If we don't see results fire them and fill the position with someone else until we find someone that gets results. I think there is a lot of evidence that people in our government are getting paid off to ignore this problem, that seems to be plaguing a large majority of people in this country. 2 years ago I asked my government representative about what he is doing to stop this plague that is robbing our people of quality time and rest. He told me his staff was working on it. Obviously they've done nothing. I know I won't be voting for him this coming election. We must Unite and form a gigantic group of citizens that are adamant in demanding that these criminals be found and prosecuted as violators of federal law. We have waited far too long for the government to do something about this situation. We also need to tell our Giant communication corporations that we have had enough, and let them know as a group,that we are going to eliminate some of their non-essential services, such as packaged TV programs, if they don't put a stop to this invasion
Of our precious time. We know that with all the technology they have, they are able to put a stop to this NOW!!! Instead of giving us meaningless little programs that do next to nothing to stop these calls. We must let them know that we are not stupid and the Fix-It offers they give us are just a diversion, to make us believe that they are trying to do something about the problem, and we have had enough of their trickery.
Let's unite and put a stop to this. We all need to do our part to make this work.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Sandy I am with you on this. It is gotten so far out of hand! There has to be something we all can do. I am sick of these phone calls.

@Sandy
100% agree. This has become absolutely out of hand.
Best wishes to you!

I too am on the Dot Not Call Registery, I have book of recorded phone calls, which I have finally quit answering, at least most of them. I get numbers listed in my area code, local city numbers. Call that number back and it is always disconnected. I have received at least 55 call with the same last 4 digits, 1288, and all from different area codes and prefex numbers.

I am on the do not call registry and Iget more than ever! 52 plus calls in 2 days is ridiculous.

I am being harassed by healthcare sales lady recording trying to get you to sign up with “United, etna, blue cross and many more.” They call multiple times a day and leave the same voice message. I put myself on their do not call list and they keep calling. I even got one of the salesman to not hang up on me once and explained this to him and didn’t receive any calls from them for a few days but then they were back to calling me multiple times a day. Since then I have not been able to get a salesperson to not hang up on me instantly when they realize I’m not a sale. It’s got to the point that I’ve had to put my phone on silent and not answer any unknown number because they call so much and late at night. It is just unbelievable! How many times do you have to not answer the phone for these inconsiderate people to realize you don’t want it or care? I have even answered when they call and tell them I don’t want it or care and still they keep calling. I don’t get why the legitimate healthcare companies want these telemarketers harassing potential customers constantly. How is getting multiple unwanted calls a day going to make me want to do business with any company they represent?

I get these calls too and I'm trying to figure out how they got my number in the first place. Any idea what company is behind this? It interferes with my business calls constantly and I also have to keep my phone on silent because they call 5+ times per day which is completely insane.

Why are we paying for Caller Id? It's so easy to spoof, it's a complete joke. Legislate a solution so one call from a telemarketer can be instantly traced to the phone provider for that company. 10 reported violations gets the company fined. 20 get the provider fined.

There are two main types of calls to our business that are absolutely endless. I understand that business phone numbers don't qualify for the DNC registry - but these calls are nothing short of constant harassment. I have a great blocking software for this, but it can't keep on top of the constantly changing numbers and IDs these creeps call from. Luckily I can also block by name, an some of them don't change the name with the new number, so that's a little bit of relief.

One type is from Google "Partners" (they want to "update" your listing, or handle your Google AdWords, etc. etc. etc.) The newest thing is the robocall saying "DO NOT HANG UP" - comes from all across the country from all different ID names, and they come many times a day.

The other is for merchant services. My Gxx what will make them stop??? Between Google "Partners" and the merchant services providers I lose hours every week. That IS harassment.

BUT NOW THE WORST - EVER - HARASSMENT HAS COME ALONG: We Care Health, aka Healthcare Ltd, aka Health HotLine (and next week it will be a different, entirely new name). They call EVERY DAY - sometimes more than once a day - and each day from a different number. From time to time the name changes, always a new name (never re-using one of the past ones). When I Google the number, I find massive reports for each number, and each number has numerous (sometimes a dozen or more ) reports before mine -- and they're *ALWAYS posted that day*. They obviously pick one number per day and start robo-dialing from it, then start fresh the next day from another number. Nothing short of harassment -- how could this NOT be a scam????

Robocalls every single day (and often more than once)and the message is always the same: "Calling to let you know that we have been granted a limited health in Roman period for a few weeks so you and your family can get a great insurance plan at the price you can afford and we make it has Feel free to sign up we have Pre-approval is ready in your area including Cigna Blue Cross and the United and many more press 1 to get a hassle free assessment Or press 2 to be placed on our DO NOT CALL list thanks for your time and be healthy and blessed."

This is maddening and so counter-productive in the work day. I have a really long list of numbers they've called from -- how can I best use it to get these scammers to stop?

I also am getting these health insurance calls every day on both my landline and mobile and they always use different phone numbers. This is the most persistent spam call campaign I have ever experienced. Please investigate and stop this harrassment.

We Care Health needs to be stopped and sued as well. I run a business. I'm on the DNC list and get calls daily from them. They say, "press #2 to get off our list", well, I've done that 10 to 15 times and they still call. If you go to act like you're buying and tell them this, they hang up on you. So maddening!!!

Come on... Most of the numbers are fake or skimmed. You cannot report legit numbers as scams when they are using our own local numbers against us. Just quit answering the calls. Talking to them doesn't help and blocking numbers doesn't help. Wake

So nothing will ever be done and deal with it? Works for people who don’t have Alzheimer’s. I guess your grandma can kiss everything she’s owned goodbye. Solid response. I can see why it was approved.

I keep getting called that say, "Press 9 to be placed on our do not call list. Thanks for your time and be healthy and blessed." They call from various numbers, it's always a different number. The last one was 347-325-9040.

You have someone who reviews comments, but not anyone to take a phone call for information to stop these people taking advantage of the elderly. Good job government.

I have been on the FTC do not call list for YEARS. I get calls 2 to 3 times a day every day from the same companies. I do not think the FTC is doing much of anything about this. The DNC list is a feel good thing and that's about it.

These robocalls have gotten much worse-the same ones mentioned above with the "Aetna, Blue Cross" etc. health insurance scam. They call multiple times EVERY day including after we've gone to bed. Something must be done!!

For your cellphone, use "do not disturb" mode, and only allow calls from people in your directory. Also, set up a Google voice number to forward to your cell, or land-line, then only give people that number. Google voice has built in spam detection, based on their knowledge of many spamming numbers and content, and has blocking options, so in the future you won't even get notified of missed calls.

call number that is in violation,,,715-587-9287

Instead of reporting violations to the FTC, which can't do anything to stop them, let's find and report to an attorney who specializes in class action lawsuits against violators. Any lawyers out there accepting the challenge? Stay on the list, however, since it would form the basis for the suit.

I often offer the telemarketer callers $500. to give me the address of their 'boiler room' call center. I tell them that upon my arrival, I would call his provided phone number. I further state that when I arrive I would meet him to verify the actual location before giving him the the cash, and then instruct him to 'permanently' leave the location, as that location was about to become a very 'unlisted disconnected' number. These offers do cause some mental reflection upon the caller to reconsider his chosen occupation.

the is a 800 service from which I constantly get calls

I have been on National Do Not Call Registry for years, and yet, I am still getting harassed by robocalls who spoof local phone numbers where I live. Also, I have been harassed by We Care Health, aka Healthcare Ltd, aka Health HotLine 3 times yesterday and in the past nonstop. They called me again today, but I refused to answer their call and they never left me any messages with the exception of various numbers I reported to FTC. In my opinion, this is harassment at its worst. There should be class action lawsuits for DNC violations and huge compensations for consumers whose number is on the DNC list.

I am willing to have them put a tracker on my phone to catch them. why will the FTC not do anything? don't give this if they are masking their number, if they were calling the white house or congress ot their personal phone, I bet they would get it stopped.

The Do Not Call page no longer takes information about the phone number that called! I don't understand.

Yeah bookmaking this wasn't a risky conclusion outstanding post!

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