(Jeremy Brooks)

“Free Cruise” Robocall Settlement Means You Could Receive Up To $900

You might not have “won a free cruise” as one of the most annoying robocalls to ever occur promises, but you could receive up to $900 for enduring the inconvenience of the call. [More]


Judge Decides Everyone Who Got Illegal Dish Network Telemarketing Calls Should Get More Money

Dish Network will have to pay more than $60 million — three times the originally calculated damages — for sales reps who made repeated, unwanted cold calls to thousands of people on the Do Not Call Registry. [More]

Zachary Rupert

Jury Finds Dish Liable For Annoying Telemarketing Calls By Dealer

Poor Dish Network. After its dealers engaged in illegal telemarketing years ago, now everyone’s holding it responsible for those calls: first it was federal and state regulators, and now the jury in a class action lawsuit in North Carolina has concluded that the satellite provider’s sales force broke the law. [More]

Matt Reinbold

Feds Shut Down Telemarketing Scam That Pitched Money-Making Schemes & Bogus Grants

As wonderful as it might sound, odds are that no one is trying to call you to give you free money, and anyone who dangles a get-rich-quick scheme in front of you should be quickly ignored. Yet federal regulators say  telemarketers tricked seniors and veterans out of their money with these sorts of scams.

Tara Chavez

Man Behind $31 Million Mortgage Telemarketing Scam Sentenced To 16 Years In Prison

A California man has been sentenced to 16 years in federal prison for his part in what prosecutors believe is the largest mortgage modification scam in history, defrauding victims out of $31 million. [More]

Mike Mozart

Santander Bank To Pay $10M Fine Over Alleged Illegal Overdraft Practices

Santander Bank has agreed to pay $10 million to settle federal regulatory allegations that it illegally charged overdraft fees to customers who didn’t affirmatively opt in to the bank’s overdraft policies.

Adam Fagen

Feds Sue To Halt Illegal Solar Panel Telemarketing Operation

It’s not against the law to tell people they might be able to save money by slapping some solar panels on their roofs. What is illegal is using millions of unauthorized calls to people on the Do Not Call list to sell those solar panels.

TWC has updated its VoiceZone site to include the option of turning Nomorobo on or off with a click.

Time Warner Cable Integrates Robocall-Blocker Into Telephone Service

While traditional phone companies have been reluctant to integrate available call-blocking technology to help consumers avoid unwanted “robocalls,” some six million Time Warner Cable customers will now be able to turn on a free feature that can cut down on these telephonic annoyances. [More]

(Tara Chavez)

Scammers Who Defrauded Scam Victims Barred From Scamming Anyone Else

Imagine you’ve been a victim of that old “woke up in a bathtub with my kidney gone” urban legend. As you stumble out of the hotel in urgent need of medical care, you come across a helpful doctor who will tend to your wounds… only to wake up in another tub with another missing organ. Replace “unauthorized donation of precious, life-sustaining organs” with “telemarketing fraud” and you’ve got the basis for a scam that took in nearly $3 million from people who had already been the victims of fraud. [More]

CFPB Sues Debt Relief Firm, Alleging It Bilked Customers For $67M

CFPB Sues Debt Relief Firm, Alleging It Bilked Customers For $67M

Being in debt can be paralyzing, leaving some people with the feeling like they’ll never climb their way out of the hole. So when a company promises it can help ease that burden, it might some like a good idea to spend even more money in the hope that you’ll ultimately be pointed in the right financial direction. Federal regulators say one debt relief operation took in $67 million from customers in need of help, but most of that money just went to the firm’s fees while the customers’ debts continued to pile up. [More]

“Travel Club” Telemarketer Fined $2.96M For Robocalling Consumers

“Travel Club” Telemarketer Fined $2.96M For Robocalling Consumers

Whenever we tell readers that it’s important for them to file complaints when they receive illegal robocalls, some inevitably respond that they believe it’s pointless and nothing ever comes of their gripe. But today, the FCC announced a nearly $3 million fine against a robocalling telemarketer following complaints from consumers who took the time to speak up. [More]

Usage: Consumer Reports September 2015
Story: Robocalls
Brand: CPR
Model: CallBlocker Protect
Photographer: Rebekah Nemethy

Consumers Put Robocall-Blocking Devices To The Test

While we wait for phone companies to get around to offering services that help consumers block unwanted prerecorded robocalls, there are already several options available for people to use now, but not all of them may be up to the task. [More]

PayPal Tweaking User Agreement To Remove Mandatory Robocalls

PayPal Tweaking User Agreement To Remove Mandatory Robocalls

PayPal’s new user agreement — the one that gives the company even more latitude to make obnoxious prerecorded marketing calls to “any telephone number that you have provided us or that we have otherwise obtained” — is set to kick in this week, but following an FCC warning that this policy might be in violation of federal law, and a letter from multiple senators asking PayPal to rethink its new terms, the company has agreed to make changes that “clear up any confusion.” [More]

FCC Votes To Give Consumers The Right To Block Annoying Spam Robocalls And Texts

FCC Votes To Give Consumers The Right To Block Annoying Spam Robocalls And Texts

You hate getting robocalls. The FCC knows you hate getting robocalls. And so today the Commission voted to move forward with a proposal that would allow consumers to block all those annoying calls and texts. [More]

FCC Says PayPal’s New User Agreement Violates Anti-Robocall Rules

FCC Says PayPal’s New User Agreement Violates Anti-Robocall Rules

We recently took a look at how PayPal’s already questionable user agreement is about to get even more invasive, giving the company a broader range of ways to contact customers with robocalls and spam texts, and with no apparent way to opt out. Today, the FCC notified PayPal that it has some concerns that the revised agreement might run afoul of federal laws. [More]

FCC Proposes Giving Consumers Right To Block Telemarketing Calls & Texts

FCC Proposes Giving Consumers Right To Block Telemarketing Calls & Texts

You know what’s not awesome? Answering your phone only to be greeted by a prerecorded robocall telemarketing message. Even a decade after the establishment of the Do Not Call registry and rules banning certain types of robocalls, unwanted calls and messages still top the list of complaints to the FCC each year. Today, FCC Chair Tom Wheeler proposed closing some additional loopholes in order to cut down on these annoying intrusions. [More]

(Tara Chavez)

Telemarketer Penalized $3.4M For Scamming Elderly Into Paying For Unwanted Medical Alert Service

Two years ago, the Federal Trade Commission shut down a Brooklyn-based telemarketing scheme that bullied elderly consumers into paying for a medical alert service they never ordered or wanted. Now a federal court has hit the telemarketer’s repeat-offender operator with a $3.4 million penalty. [More]

(Great Beyond)

FTC Orders Company That Swindled Tens Of Millions From Seniors To Pay $10M Judgment

We’ve said it too many times to count at this point, but scammers who take advantage of senior citizens are the worst. Today, the Federal Trade Commission made sure there was one less scammer out there by permanently barring the mastermind behind a multi-million dollar fraud from all future telemarketing activities. [More]