Unwanted Calls, Texts, And Spoofed Phone Numbers - The Beacon

Unwanted Calls, Texts, And Spoofed Phone Numbers

Unwanted Calls, Texts, And Spoofed Phone Numbers

Recently Attorney General Greg Zoeller held panel discussions at three locations in Indiana in which all three Indiana Better Business Bureaus participated.

Part of the discussion centered on what to do when you receive a robo call.  The advice which Attorney Zoeller gave is fairly simple. Do not press any numbers either to speak with a representative or to opt out of receiving calls because by pressing any number alerts the robo caller that they have reached a good working number.  The robo caller can then either sell your information to others or spoof your number in their attempt to defraud others by using your phone number.  Attorney General Zoeller advises callers to hang up immediately before the system can determine if they’ve reached a good working number.

This past week, the Attorney General’s office distributed the following information regarding robo calls, unwanted text messages, and spoofed phone numbers.  Here is the full text of the e-mail:

Top ways to respond to telemarketers & robocallers

Feel like sounding off about those annoying telemarketing calls and text messages? You’re not alone.

More than 16,000 consumers have filed Do Not Call and robocall complaints with the Indiana Attorney General’s Office so far this year – that’s more than the total number received in 2011. Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller wants you to know he is on your side and working to identify ways to better trace illegal calls, prosecute violators and combat caller ID spoofing.

Why so many calls? Scammers don’t follow the law so they don’t filter out phone numbers registered on Indiana’s Do Not Call list. Caller ID spoofing technology allows them to disguise the source of the call to evade investigators and prosecution. Companies and scammers can use autodialers to send out thousands of phone calls every minute at a low cost.

What can you do if you receive a robocall? Hang up immediately. If possible find a way to block the number. Do not press a number to get off the list. Pressing a number confirms the scammers called a working line and they can sell your information.

Answer an unwanted call from a live operator? Write down as much information as you can, including the name of the telemarketing company, the location from which they are calling, the name of the person calling, the phone number and the product or service they offer.

Report these telephone privacy violations to the Attorney General’s office by filing a consumer complaint online at www.indianaconsumer.com or by calling 1-888-834-9969. Also, tell your family and friends what to do if they receive an unsolicited call or text.  You could save them from becoming a victim of a scam.

Also contact your local BBB with questions or to report any suspicious activity regarding telemarketing calls, unsolicited text messages, or spoofed phone numbers.

For more information you can trust, visit www.evansville.bbb.org or call us at 473-0202 or toll-free (800) 359-0979.

About the Author

Tom

Tom is Vice President for the Tri-State Better Business Bureau. In addition to answering the needs of our accredited businesses, Tom can be seen on WEVV providing tips for businesses and consumers. He also works closely with other local media outlets to keep our community informed of marketplace issues affecting our area.

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