How it works:
People should continually file complaints with their Attorney Generals office and also file with:
If enough people keep complaining then maybe something will get done.
The calls are being made from outside the US however most of the call centers (where you actually talk to someone after pressing 1) are in the US and the companies making the money from the scam are owned by people in the US. Asking to be removed from their calling list only verifies that they have a working phone number. They continue to call because it is a criminal operation and these criminals do not care about the law.
Many of these calls are coming from Costa Rica and India and they are using spoofed (false) numbers, which in itself is illegal. They do cold calling for or sell the leads to numerous companies in this country and they know that what they are doing is illegal. Tomorrow this same number may be selling Cruises, Timeshares or Security Systems but if you follow the money it usually ends up in the hands of an American LLC. Keep complaining to the FTC and FCC, and start bugging our politicians to pass laws to make it punishable in criminal court instead of handing out fines that they don't pay. Another course of action is to contact phone companies to find out why they won't block spoofed numbers. With today's technology that should be an easy thing to do, unless they are somehow profiting from the use of their systems.
For anyone thinking of using Special Information Tones (or as they're called in the industry SIT tones) to fake a non working phone number, they won't work. Since around 2001-2002, the costs of "digital" business lines have dropped dramatically, along with Voice over IP (Internet) telephone service. Neither of these use the SIT tones as the call information is carried separate from the audio.
This separate call information tells the calling party digitally if the call was answered, busy, voice mail, forwarded, rejected, etc. This renders SIT tones useless. Also the "TeleZapper" products that used to be on the market used this method as well, and were rendered ineffective for the same reasons.
It is also through this separate call information message that the spoofed caller ID information is transmitted.
Robocalls are illegal unless you have given them prior permission in writing (not worded into some small print contract from a 3rd party) and are absolutely illegal to a cell phone. The Telephone Consumer Protection Act permits individuals who have received certain unlawful telemarketing, such as junk faxes or telemarketing calls, to sue the violator in state courts where they may be awarded up to $1500 for each violation.
Check here first to see if it is one of their phone numbers:
Pacific Telecom Communications Group
Follow JD's recommendations in the blog and stop them at the source.
Many of the disposable numbers come from Pacific Telecom Communications Group and they are currently under investigation and in the midst of various lawsuits. (The principles involved have been part of actions by the FCC under other business names).These businesses have ripped people off for millions of dollars, yet have paid only a couple of thousand dollars in fines. The only way to stop them is to throw them in prison for a few years to make this criminal activity less attractive.
The Oregon Public Utilities Commission has revoked Pacific Telecom's certificate to provide telecom services in Oregon.
The Indiana Attorney General?s Office filed lawsuits against:
Consumer Credit Group and Proactive Planning Solutions of Arizona for violating Indiana?s Do Not Call Law and Auto-Dialer Act known as the robo-call law. Both companies violated the Credit Service Organization Act and Deceptive Consumer Sales Act by not obtaining $25,000 surety bonds with the state and collecting money upfront without performing any services.
Debt Zero of California for collecting money up front, failing to provide services or a refund and operating without a $25,000 surety bond.
Clear One Advantage of Maryland and Credit Arbitrators of Texas for violating the Credit Service Organization Act and the Deceptive Consumer Sales Act by not obtaining the required surety bonds.
Proof that current laws mean nothing to these scum suckers, these same people under different companies have been sued in the past and have only paid a minimal fine. Here are just a few:
Write your Congressmen and Senators. We need CRIMINAL penalties against the companies that are profiting from these calls. Follow the money, slap them in prison, no one left to outsource to overseas boiler rooms, problem solved. Since they are operating across borders it should become a federal felony and should be handled by the FBI under the RICO Act.
call from the 202-499-1488 and numbers on both sides are fraud attempts. i just spoke with a young lady that said she had been doing this for 10 years and that we the coustomers cant catch them because they use a call center. good luck to all that would like to try.
I hate these companies. Since they called me on my day off, it gave me something to do. I looked up and called their 877 number, which by the way is 877-434-3737, picked an extension (in my case #215), and continued to call and recall and recall and recall....., filling up their voice mail box so that they would be inundated with messages and be forced to either go through every message and delete each one individually or do a delete all and possibly delete an important message. The key is to stay on the line as long as possible to use up the digital mailbox space. So everybody call, pick your favorite extension and go to town!!! Happy redialing! :)
Remember, these crooks are spoofing (faking) the Caller ID information that we see. They are using dozens of different phone numbers. That is why it is so important to report them each and every time they bother you.
There are two companies offering free (not) cruises just for participating in a survey. The first is ESG Research. These crooks have actually stolen a real company's name. The second is Political Opinions of America and they have had the nerve to recently set up a fake website!
The survey is fake. It is a ruse to get around the do not call list. Don't bother taking it because it doesn't mean a damn thing.
The cruise is not free. You will be asked for your debit or credit card to 'hold your reservation' and they will also tell you about some 'small fees' that you will have to pay in order to take the free cruise. Well, the fees are not small nor are they refundable!
Do not give these people the time of day! Hang up as soon as you hear their b.s. robocall start. Add them to your phone's address book under SCAM. Block them if you can.
Please immediately report each and every one of these illegal robo scam calls that you receive to www.donotcall.gov.
You can gripe that it doesn't work, but they cannot do anything about it unless and until we report it!
Thank you sooooo much Roberts Supreme Court for making money the root of all politics. TAKE ME OFF THIS LIST. OR, what?
I got a call from (312) 765-7460 claiming I would get a free cruise for doing a 30 sec survey on American debt. Bull
whos your momma walkin down the street
Got a call from ESG research group for a free cruise if I take a 30 second survey. Ran a search on Google of this group while still listening to the automated message, I found this page, then it hung up on me due to no response being entered. The number used was 312-765-7460
I too, received this call with a promise of the 2 day cruise for 2 to the Bahamas. I completed the survey, and when it came time to schedule my cruise and pay the port tax fee( which was only about 150.00) I realized I had left my purse with my credit cards in my mother's car, who wouldn't be home from work for another hour and a half. When I told the rep I'd need to call her back with my credit card info, her response was ,"actually, we don't have an actual call back number here for the public, so why don't I call you back in about 2 hours?" Weird, I thought, but it still didn't really click just then that it could be a scam. But over the next hour, I googled esg research free cruise and noticed the plethora of complaints and decided it would not be a wise choice to furnish my credit card info over the phone to someone who could not provide me with even such a small thing as their call back number. I advise not getting sucked into this. I'm glad I didn't go through with it!
My call was actually from 310 362 7319, but the same robocall. Thanks if you can do anything to stop them.
I seem to be getting these calls monthly. "Jennifer" asks you
How do you rate the Democrats' handling of the economy?
How do you rate the Republicans' handling of the economy?
How do you rate the President's handling of the economy?
Then, if all goes well, you're put through to a (he says) registered travel agent who offers you a free 2-day cruise in the Bahamas on Royal Caribbean for yourself and a guest, with 18 months to decide which cruise. All you have to pay are a few fees of less than $200.
My agent, "Carlos," apparently didn't know that you need a passport to get back into the US, thereby giving himself away as a fake. I didn't give him any more time, so he never got around to asking for my credit card number to pay for those "few fees" and "hold" my reservation.
I got the call first and gave scores 1 to republicans and 5 for democrats. Then I got cut off. So just to experiment, I gave 5 to republicans and 1 to democrats the third time I was called by "Jennifer." That time I got through and got a lengthy spiel from "Carlos" (live voice) that I could get a free Royal Caribbean cruise in the Bahamas with only a few fees worth less than $200 and 18 months to book. I figured it was some GOP vote buying scheme, so I hung up. From this website's comments, I now know that the Republicans are innocent (this time) and if I'd strung "Carlos" along farther, I would eventually have been asked my credit card number.
As for getting cut off, this robocall machine gives you almost no time to respond which explains a lot of cut offs. It probably malfunctions in a lot of ways, and why not? They seem to be calling everyone in the US on a monthly basis so have no problem with dropping a lot of calls.
I wish reporting these calls did any good. Every single call I've ever reported has always netted me -- at most! -- a form letter from the FCC saying either they can't do anything about it because they don't have enough information or the call wasn't in violation with their rules when it clearly was. There are too many scam artists and not enough people to enforce their own rules.
These scammers are trying to get around the DNC list by calling themselves a "survey." Surveys are not covered by the DNC list.
Easy there! I got the same call with the same promise of a Bahama cruise -- my survey started with the Democrat question (how are they handling the debt situation on a scale of 1 to 5) and I kept trying to give them a 1 (lowest possible score) but my answer would not register and the question kept looping back to me. I did this about 5 times and then it hung up on me. I drew the same but opposite conclusion -- the survey must have been put out by democrats who would bribe you with the promise of a Bahama vacation and then not accept a poor rating for their party. I was tempted to try pressing 2 or 3 so I wouldn't lose the vacation (not that I thought it was legit to begin with; my wife and I were laughing through the whole thing) which I figured others would do as well, thus stacking the results in favor of the dems.
Bottom line, we are all way too cynical. I'm as conservative as they come, and the progressive agenda will see to the decline of our country, but I'm ashamed that I jumped to the conclusion that this was a left-wing survey when it was probably just a poorly coded program.
No message, just constant hang ups.
LMFAO Everyone knows that if you don't recognize the number on the Caller ID, DON"T PICK IT UP!!! It's been all over the TV/Radio/Satelite Radio about these scams for years, and yet here people are playing that tired CD with the skip in it about how there are scammers.You should know your friends/relatives OR people of some importance phone numbers. I don't see the problem why it is so hard not to pick up the phone when you know you don't know the number on the ID CALLER...
It's the d****head libtard dimocrat survey - I asked them how many golf vacations Obama had been on the past 3 years - they hung up.
Getting calls from this munber & they are getting real smart & saying I didnt call you when he did
Rec'd call & a recording came on saying I would win a cruise for 2 after answering a few questions.
I hung up.
I don't know how you summised this to be a democratic party issue. What makes you think that? I figured they don't care a rats butt about our "survey" answers and merely want to sell us time share cruises or something. In any case, real survey groups never offer anything like that. You will never provide credit card information to a real survey group. Most real legitimate survey groups are non partisan, and typically operate out of universities, with college students making the calls. Conservatives, and I'm a conservative republican, sometimes call these groups liberal because they report whatever answer they get, regardless of whether it shows a left or right tilt in public opinion. If the surveyed approve of abortion, real and legitimate surveys post that information in the context asked (which is very important) with demographics data to show who was asked. Many of these legitmate surveys ask demographic info and a general question to find a random person in the home, like are you the oldest person residing in the house? In any case, shame on you for referring to this likely scam as "democratic" in nature.
Caller ID = "Phone Scam"??? haha too funny.
Someone who can change caller ID names probl realized who they were and gave them a proper name...lol
Well, I'm starting to not-like Google but indeed Google Voice is super, super helpful and has tons of advantages. The only flaw is that you cannot do MMS but the spam filter is second to none indeed.
You can even have a different answer recording for each contact or group (like marketers, collectors etc) and simply add your unwanted contact to that number. Presto! It is very cool indeed.
They didn't identify themselves as from any party. It sounded like a conservative survey to me.
Husband & I both got one today. Husbands was hang up, Mine appears to be from DC. I did not answer. I am growing tired of this daily calling,
another scam caller from ESG
Got a call from 202 499-1485 today and 202 499-1479 on 11/11/2011, no message.