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I've been reporting illegal telemarketing calls ever since I signed up for the federal Do-Not-Call list (888-382-1222). While it can take some time for the calls to stop, I have found if you report each one that in a few weeks the specific calls generally stop.
I have been taking the time to report these calls because they interfere my life and I know they do for others as well. If more people reported them we would all be less bothered by them. That's why I have been reporting them, but now I have another motivation: money.
Robo-calls that use a "predictive dialer" and/or play a recorded message when you answer are illegal if you don't have any connection with them. And laws were passed that give you the right to demand payment for each violation. There are conditions and rules that need to be followed.
I discovered http://WeStopTelemarketers.com and I just signed up with them last week. If you report a robo-call they determine if you have a claim. And if you do they go after the telemarketer. If the telemarketer pays, you get 50% of the settlement which could be $250-$500 and in some case much more.
I was thinking that non-profit could file claims for any calls they get, but they could also encourage their members to file claims and donate some or all of the settlement to the non-profit as a "Thank you" for letting them know about this option.
The web site above is legit and partners with a Washington, DC law firm. Other than being a registered user of the site I have no other connection with them at this time. (I am thinking about working with them to help with their site and the investigations)
I'm a bit late to this, but I think this sounds like a great idea for an extremely aggrevating problem.
This is great stuff. Unfortunately for me, most of my calls are from spoofed phone numbers. They call from the local cell phone exchange so that you think it is a legit phone call. I've gotten so annoyed with robo-calls, that I don't answer the phone unless I recognize the number, or they are in my contacts.
Gary Network/Systems Admin Berlin, NHHost Non-profit Tech Careers, Security ForumsCo-Host Networks, Hardware, & Telecommunications Forum
Thank you! I might need this more than people do. I get a daily 5-10 calls from telemarketers and scammers. I never answer those calls, but they never stop calling me. I even read an article about suing those companies who call us. I think the website you mentioned above is helping people through the court process. Thanks for sharing this.
I still have not received any settlements on my robo-call claims I made at WeStopTelemarketers.com. I am still hopeful, but I don't see much activity on the reports I made. Not sure what is going on there.
Just a note about getting robo-calls with spoofed numbers. You should still report them to the FTC at least. I am sure if they get phone company records they will be able to determine the actual phone number. It's a log like trying to find the IP address of someone using a proxy server. If you can get the logs from the ISP they will show what IP address the person was really using. The problem is you need to find out who the ISP is and then get a court order before the ISP will cough it up.
And if you want to sue someone behind those spoofed robo-calls, just play along with them until they give you a web address, phone number you can call, or some other company calls you to follow up. Get the real contact information for someone and the legal process will do the rest. Best to give unique information to each caller and document the process. Later when some credit card company, payday loan, other company contacts you looking for the fake name you gave then you can document THAT call and report them.
The point is they don't make it easy for us to fight back, but it's not impossible. And until more of us do, this problem is only going to increase.
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