When the Do Not Call Registry program was created, many celebrated this solution to banning telemarketing calls. Unfortunately, some telemarketers have gone out of their way to try and get around the registry. Even college students are finding themselves on the receiving end of this issue. All college students on campuses everywhere from Columbia University in New York to Texas A&M and UC Berkeley in the San Francisco Bay Area, can benefit from knowing the following information as it relates to telemarketers and their cell phones.
With people adding their landlines to the Do Not Call Registry, it only made sense for telemarketers to try their luck with calling people’s cell phones—even though this activity is illegal. However, students do have the power to fight back with proper knowledge about the Do Not Call Registry and how it works. The first thing to be aware of is that telemarketers are sneaky and will use deception to obtain your number. One of the ways they’ve managed to accomplish this is by sending out fake emails, disguising themselves as representatives from the Do Not Call Registry.
There are two different types of fake email messages that have been sent out to the masses, including many college students. One version of the email states that the recipient’s cell phone will be bombarded by calls from telemarketers because of a new “cell phone number database” and that they will be charged for such calls. The message then encourages the recipient to register their cell phone number by calling the number they’ve provided, which is supposed to provide protection from these calls for up to five years. The second email version alerts the recipient of a new Do Not Call Registry just for cell phone numbers and also prompts making a call from your cell phone in order to register the number. However, both claims are completely untrue.
Here are the facts that every student with a cell phone should know by heart when it comes to the Do Not Call Registry:
- There is no national cell phone registry.
- Cell phone numbers can be added to the same Do Not Call Registry that people use to register their land lines.
- The FCC prohibits telemarketers from using automated dialers to call cell phones, especially without the person’s consent.
- Calls that are considered “business-to-business” are not covered in the Do Not Call Registry.
If you happen to receive a call on your cell from a number you suspect is a telemarketer, you can use the Internet to find out who the company is and hopefully report their activities. There are numerous name and phone lookup sites that allow you to track who is calling you. While sites like www.whotracker.com are used more for social networking purposes, they do provide a detailed phone directory, where you can search for a phone number by area code.