I'll bet you've called one 800 number or other, signing up for a "national do not call list." You're probably still getting those annoying robocalls. To make matters worse, it now appears like they're calling from local numbers. That's called "spoofing." The Federal Communications Commission is making it a priority to combat these practices. They're not just annoying. They're, in some cases, illegal. FCC chairman Ajit Pai says the agency is making it a "top priority" to combat these practices. American consumers received a reported 2.4 billion robocalls per month in 2016. Rapidly advancing technology enables the scammers to cheaply & easily defeat countermeasures. The FCC has levied more than $300 million in fines since Chairman Pai took the agency over.Here are some tips from the FCC website...

  • Don't answer calls from unknown numbers. Let them go to voicemail.
  • If the caller claims to be from a legitimate company or organization, hang up and call them back using a valid number found on their website or on your latest bill if you do business with them.
  • If you answer and the caller (often a recording) asks you to press a button to stop receiving calls, or asks you to say "yes" in response to a question, just hang up. Scammers often use these tricks to identify, and then target, live respondents, or to use your "yes" to apply unauthorized charges on your bill.
  • Be Aware: Caller ID showing a "local" number no longer means it is necessarily a local caller.
  • If you answer and the caller asks for payment using a gift card, it's likely a scam. Legitimate organizations like law enforcement will not ask for payment with a gift card.
  • If you receive a scam call, file a complaint with the FCC Consumer Complaint Center by selecting the "phone" option and selecting "unwanted calls." The data we collect helps us track trends and supports our enforcement investigations.
  • If you have lost money because of a scam call, contact your local law enforcement agency for assistance.
  • Ask your phone company if it offers a robocall blocking service. If not, encourage them to offer one. You can also visit the FCC's website for more information about illegal robocalls and resources on available robocall blocking tools to help reduce unwanted calls.
  • Consider registering your telephone numbers in the National Do Not Call Registry. Lawful telemarketers use this list to avoid calling consumers on the list.

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