You can stop many telemarketing calls from reaching your home by registering your phone number with the National Do Not Call Registry. It’s a simple, free and effective means to limit the telemarketing calls you receive. Joining the registry won’t stop all telemarketing calls from reaching your home, but you’ll get fewer calls than you did before. Below are instructions on how to join the National Do Not Call Registry, information about how the registry works, and tips on other ways to reduce unwanted telemarketing calls and protect your personal privacy.
Who Established the National Do Not Call Registry?
The registry was established by the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission.
How Do I Sign Up for the National Do Not Call Registry?
You can register by calling toll-free (1-888) 382-1222 from the telephone number you wish to register. For TYY call (866) 290-4236. You can also register online at www.donotcall.gov. To register online, you must provide an active e-mail address. The service is free.
Can I Register More Than One Telephone Number?
Yes. There is no limit on the number of personal telephone numbers that you can register. However, you may have to register more than once to cover all of your phone numbers. You can register up to three telephone numbers at one time if you register online at www.donotcall.gov. If you have more than three personal telephone numbers, you will have to go through the online registration process more than once to register all of your numbers. If you register by telephone you can only register one telephone number at a time. This is because you must call the registry from the phone number you wish to register. But you can register multiple personal phone numbers by calling the registry from each of the numbers.
Can I Register a Business Telephone Number?
No. The National Do Not Call Registry is only for home phone numbers.
Can I Register a Fax Number?
No. Faxes are not covered by the National Do Not Call Registry.
Can I Register a Cell Phone Number?
Yes, by calling (888) 382-1222 from the cell phone or by going to www.donotcall.gov.
Will My Cell Phone Be Assaulted by Telemarketing Calls if I Don’t Register?
No. Because telemarketers are prohibited from using automated dialers to call cell phone numbers, telemarketing calls to cell phone numbers are rare. However, there’s no harm in registering your cell phone number with the National Do Not Call Registry.
Will I Receive Confirmation That I have Registered?
If you register by phone, you will not receive confirmation. However, you can verify your registration by calling (1-888) 382-1222 or by logging onto www.donotcall.gov. If you register online, you will receive an email for each telephone number that you register. You need to open each email and click on the link in the email within 72 hours to activate your registration. If you don’t click on the link in the email, the number you tried to register will not be added to the registry.
Will My Registration Expire?
No. Congress changed the law so that registrations no longer expire. Telephone numbers on the registry will only be removed when they are disconnected and reassigned, or when the consumer chooses to remove a number from the registry.
What If I Get a New Telephone Number?
You will need to register the new number.
How Does the Registry Work?
Telemarketers are required to search the registry every 31 days and delete from their call lists the phone numbers of consumers who have registered.
How Soon After I Register Will I Start Getting Fewer Calls?
Telemarketers have up to 31 days from the date you register to stop calling you.
Will Registration Stop All Telemarketing Calls?
No. The National Do Not Call Registry does not apply to calls from or on behalf of political organizations, charities and telephone surveyors. The registry also does not apply to calls from companies with which you have an established business relationship (see below), or companies to whom you provided express written agreement to receive calls.
Can Some Companies Call Me After I Register?
Yes. If you bought, leased or rented something from a company (i.e., if you have an “established business relationship” with the company), the company can call you up to 18 months after the transaction -- even if your number is registered with the National Do Not Call Registry. In addition, if you submit an inquiry or application to a company, the company can call you for three months after the inquiry or application -- - even if your number is registered with the National Do Not Call Registry.
Can I Stop These Companies From Calling Me Again?
Yes. If you receive a call from a company with which you have an established business relationship, don’t just hang up. Instead, tell the caller that you wish to be put on the company’s “Do Not Call” list. Companies must keep their own Do Not Call lists and are prohibited from calling anyone on their list for 10 years.
Can I Stop Charities From Calling Me?
Calls made by charities are not subject to the restrictions of the National Do Not Call Registry, and charities are not required to keep their own Do Not Call lists. However, if a third-party telemarketer calls you on behalf of a charity, you can ask the telemarketer to not to call you again on behalf of that specific charity.
Are Telemarketing Calls from Overseas Covered by the National Do Not Call Registry?
Yes. Any telemarketer calling a U.S. consumer must comply with the registry, regardless of where the call originates.
How Do I File a Complaint About a Violation of the National Do Not Call Registry?
If your number has been registered for at least 31 days and you receive a call from a telemarketer that you believe is covered by the registry, you can file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission online at www.donotcall.gov or by calling (888) 382-1222.
You need either the name or telephone number of the company that called you and the date of the call. Federal law requires anyone making a telephone solicitation call to your home to provide his/her name, the name of the entity on whose behalf the call is being made and a telephone number or address at which you may contact that entity.
What are the Penalties for Violating the National Do Not Call Registry?
Violators can receive a civil penalty of up to $11,000 per call.
Are There Restrictions on When a Telemarketer Can Call?
Even if a call is not prohibited by the National Do Not Call Registry, telemarketers are limited to calling you between the hours of 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.
How Else Can I Limit Telemarketing Calls?
Consider getting Caller ID on your home phone. Telemarketers are prohibited from using devices to block information from appearing on a consumer’s Caller ID box. Consider having your name unlisted or unpublished in the local telephone directory. Telemarketers often get their lists from this source. Have your name and phone number deleted from consumer credit lists that are provided to telemarketers by the major credit reporting agencies. You can do so by phone by calling (888) 5OPT-OUT or online at hwww.optoutprescreen.com.