It’s bad enough to call up an elderly person and mislead him or her into paying a pile of cash for a medical alert service they don’t need or want. But what takes one Brooklyn-based telemarketing scheme to the next level was its alleged tendency to bill consumers thousands of dollars for something they never ordered. [More]
One might think that if you’re a company that runs both the Do Not Call registry for a country as well as a telemarketing division, the two departments might compare notes once in a while. Because how embarrassing would it be if the company’s telemarketers called people on that Do Not Call list? So embarrassing, and worth a $110,000 fine. [More]
For several years, American consumers have been receiving unwanted robocalls with a recorded message from “Rachel” or one of her fictional co-workers at the vaguely named “Cardholder Services.” Not only are these calls often in violation of do-not-call regulations, they are also a scam to trick people our of their cash. Today, the Federal Trade Commission announced it had pulled the plug on five companies behind these scammy robocalls. [More]
Ah, the cherished dinner hour. Peace, quiet and if that stupid telemarketer doesn’t stop calling I am seriously going to throw my fork really violently at something. If that sounds like you, you aren’t alone. Even with the “Do Not Call” registry, there’s been a spike in complaints against telemarketers, especially those pre-recorded phone calls that always seem to come when you don’t want them to. Although, does anyone ever really welcome a telemarketer’s call? Doubt it. [More]
We all likely know at least a few people who have endured being a telemarketer, and while it sounds like an awful, horrible no-good very bad gig, hey, it’s a job. But one telemarketer had simply had it up to here with people hanging up on him. And so he did something a bit extreme to express that frustration — he called back and told the homeowner there was a bomb in the house. [More]
Sears, Sears. We know that you’re desperate. But acting clingy and desperate is no way to win over customers, especially the ones who have just made a purchase in your store. While it seems like every retailer is pushing their service plans on customers, they don’t usually resort to phone stalking, like what you did to your poor customer Mike. He had to resort to contacting the FTC and your corporate offices about the stalking.
It’s over, Sears. You should have taken the hint one of the first few dozen times you called. Now Mike really never wants anything to do with you again.
Telemarketing itself isn’t a crime (more’s the pity) but using that method to cheat 22,000 people out of around $30 million sure is, as one one woman sentenced to 15 years in prison found out recently. [More]
Since ’91, it’s been illegal for telemarketers to use autodialers and other robot-like devices to call your cellphone. Last week, a bill was introduced to change that. While in the past email hoaxes have gone around saying that your cellphone could be opened up to telemarketers, HR 3035 seeks to let businesses contact your cellphone “for informational purposes.” [More]
Now this is how you mess with a telemarketer. Reader areaman in the comments on “Annoy Telemarketers Into Leaving You Alone” pointed out this clip of comedian Jim Florentine taking on one of those debt consolidation companies. She keeps trying to read through her pitch and he keeps insisting that there was a part in it he didn’t hear and makes her go over it again and again. “No, no, before that,” is his constant refrain. She tries to soldier on but eventually hangs up in frustration. Classic. [More]
One of our readers works sales in an insurance telemarketing operation. He’s stepped forward to give us the skinny on how he gets commission, the real reasons that drive some of their tactics, and what personal information you should never give over the phone to a telemarketer. [More]
Here’s a weird possible scam going around. Our reader Chris writes, “Every day for the past week, I’ve been getting an automated call that asks me, ‘This is Survey 2010. Do you have a small dog?'” [More]
Tim says a Chase marketer called him up and offered him $150 upfront in exchange for a commitment to knock $1,800 off his credit card balance within the next seven months. Intrigued, Tim asked the company to send documentation for the offer, but the guy on the phone refused. He says the number on his caller ID checks out as a Chase number and doesn’t know what to make of the strange promotion. [More]
Jon says someone called him earlier this month and claimed to be from a company called Target Point Consulting, and asked Jon to answer a survey. When Jon said no and asked how the caller got his number, which is on the Do Not Call list, things got interesting. [More]
Doug, who sent in this photo of what showed up on his caller ID when a roboscammer rang him up, possibly has the most effective phone screening system ever. Or maybe it’s just that the scamming company on the other line is at least honest about how it defrauds people. [More]
Inc21 supposedly sells web hosting and other Internet-related services, but the FTC says that in reality it contracted with offshore telemarketers who helped it cram charges onto unsuspecting customers’ phone bills, earning $19 million over the past five years. Customers who complained about the charges said they were either never contacted in the first place, were promised a free trial, were told that the telemarketer was just verifying business information, or explicitly refused Inc21’s offer and were charged anyway. [More]