Telemarketer 3: Rise of the Robocalls

Picture this: It’s dinner time. The kids are screaming. Then the phone rings just as you sit down. It could be important, so you run through the toys to the phone. You answer, but all you hear is silence. After a few seconds, a recorded message reminds you that it may be time to have your carpets cleaned and they offer a great deal this month. Or you’ve won a trip. Or you can lower your credit card interest rate.

Does this sound familiar? Well, you’re not alone. We hear from many people about these robocalls. If the call is a message from someone selling something, and you haven’t given your written permission to get calls from that company, the call is illegal.

In fact, the FTC has stopped many companies from engaging in this illegal conduct. For instance, we just settled a case with USA Vacation Station because it made millions of illegal robocalls to sell vacation packages. Under the settlement, the company and its owner are banned from robocalling anyone ever again.  

Do robocalls bug you, too? If so, watch this video to learn more about them, and the steps you can take to help slow them down.



Thank you for continuing to work to stop this horrible practice. As senior citizens we seem so victimized. Thanks again.

Now that I have signed up to stop the robo calls, I am getting robo text on my cell phone worse than the calls

The Federal Trade Commission should be doing a whole lot more to get these idiots in jail where they belong. This practice has been going on for years and years. Meanwhile, all our outgoing calls seem to be monitored by Homeland Security. So lets make some serious progress! It's just been getting worse and worse!

I use a phone message to stop most of them and it works. I say on the answering machine message that if the caller is calling from a phone that is blocked we will not answer the call. If they wish to call back they need to unblock their phone so we can see who's calling, Same thing with messages left on our machine or service providers Message system.

When they keep calling anyway and I can track down who they are, I find their corporate number (if it is a business in this country) I tell them we are on the DO NOT CALL list so to proceed at their own risk, because we will file complaints with the FTC.
It helps to have the FTC do not call consequences handy so you can remind the caller what is at stake. I keep a printout next to my phone of the things the FTC can do to them, by way of fines mostly, to make them stop. They use out of the country computer calls now and their is nothing we can do about them so just have to deal. I hope this helps someone.

I agree it dose no good to sign DO NOT CALL LIST any more. It stopped calls when it first came out, but robo callers ignore it now.

How about requiring the service providers to set up an automatic call back option. When an unwanted call comes into your line, you hang up, get a dail tone, than press *61. This would immediately deposit 25 cents to your account. The service provider would be required to come up with the funds.

The problem is they spoof caller id's so the number you would be calling back would not even be the individual that called you. (IE: when you try to call back a number later and it says the number is not in service is from a spooked caller id) Best thing to do is keep the date and time of the call and the number that displayed in the caller id. The FTC can track the traffic and determine where the call actually originated. (Often it's offshore making the problem worse)

Hahahaha I got a robocall while watching this video.

this sound so true, ive been going threw so many changes with all the bull they put me threw!

Of course it's all right for my congressperson to make annoying robocalls.


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