Phony "Do Not Call" List: Phone Scam Overview
For most people, getting unsolicited calls from telemarketers is about as fun as watching paint dry. These persistent and annoying phone calls usually come at the worst possible time. Enough people got fed up with the telemarketers that they decided to start a petition and form the National Do Not Call List.
By putting your name and phone number on this list, you are in essence protecting yourself from receiving these types of phone calls. If telemarketers call your number after you have been put on the list, they are breaking the law. Unfortunately, the willingness of people to get on these types of registries has created a perfect opportunity for scammers. This is a very common phone scam that you can easily avoid falling victim to it.
How the "Do Not Call" List Phone Scam Works
Like many other scams out there, this one starts with a legitimate sounding email or phone call. If you receive an email, it will inform you that you number isn't in the national "Do Not Call" list, but that you can enter it by clicking the link below. Once you click the link, you will then be taken to a website that looks legitimate. You will then be prompted to enter your landline and cell phone number and other personal information.
Once you enter in this information, it is just a matter of time until you get a phone call from this so-called list. The caller will usually pressure you into paying for their services. They will threaten you with things like taking your name off of the list, which will lead to more and more calls from telemarketers.
When the scam starts directly with a call you may first receive an automated message that instructs you to press a number to be put on the "Do Not Cal"l list, this is a way for scammers to test a phone number and see if it belongs to a live person. By pressing the number you are actually inviting illegitimate telemarketers and scammers to call you.
If you don't get an automated message and instead are talking to a live person, they will use high pressure tactics to try to get you to pay to sign up for a "Do Not Call" list. Like in the situation that starts with an email, they will threaten that your number will be called at all times by telemarketers.
Regardless of how many threats and promises the caller makes, you need to remain steadfast and decline any offers they are making to keep you "safe."
Knowledge Is Power
The best way for you to avoid this scam is by directly adding your number to the real Do Not Call List. By going to the actual website and signing up, you will be able to know when a fake list is giving you a call. In the United States, there is only one Do Not Call Registry and it is completely free to add your number to it.
The penalty for illegally calling someone on the Do Not Call List can be up to $16,000 per phone call - so if you want to make scammers pay, sign up! The Do Not Call Registry does not stop all unwanted calls, politicians and political groups, charities, debt collectors, and survey companies will all still be able to call you.
Reporting the Scammers
If you get a call or email from someone claiming to have a Do Not Call List report them immediately to the Federal Trade Commission, then be sure to sign up for the real Do Not Call List if you haven't already.
Our free phone tracer app has instructions on how to sign up for the Do Not Call List and makes it easy to do so by bringing you directly to the real website, we also make it easy to report phone scams to the FTC, and you can leave your feedback on any number that has tried to scam you in our phone book. By leaving your feedback you expose scammers and help others!
If you don't have an iPhone you can still identify unknown numbers, check for suspicious behavior, leave your feedback on phone numbers, and learn how to report phone scams on our website.