Robocalls! Please Stop calling me!
Recently it was announced that the Federal Communications Commission or FCC, approved a measure that would allow communications companies to automatically block robocalls. This measure, while a step in the right direction, still does not stop your calls from occuring - voice carriers can choose not to automatically block robocalls and can charge you for the feature.
A measure in the House of Representatives would allow for the government to fine companies or individuals who choose to robocall after breaking the rules on this legislation. The FCC would be allowed to levy a fine of up to $10,000 per call and the statute of limitations would go back three years.
So what does that mean for the consumer? The rules for voice carriers is still not strong enough in the consumer’s favor, as the blocking of robocalls isn’t automatic and can be a chargeable extra. The best thing to do is contact your voice provider, whether it is Spectrum, Verizon or the handful of others and find out what they can do for you.
In the meantime, there are some best practices you can do to limit the amount of robocalls you get:
Sign up for the Federal Trade Commission’s Do Not Call List - Signing up is free and easy by either calling 1-888-382-1222 or visiting www.donotcall.gov
Tell the credit reporting companies not to give you prescreened offers - You can call 1-800-567-8688 to register your information or you can go to www.optoutprescreen.com to complete your registration.
You can register with the Direct Marketing Association - Going to www.dmachoice.org allows you to fill in your information and tell Markets what you do and do not want. There is a processing fee of $2 but the registration is good for 10 years.
You can turn on the “do not disturb” feature on your phone
You can ask your phone carrier to block or prevent “anonymous” or “private” callers
You can file a complaint with the FTC when you get a robocall
You can choose not to answer calls from numbers you do not know
All of these items won’t stop robocalls but they can limit the number and intensity of them that occur.