Canadians Getting More Telemarketing Calls After Putting Names On Do Not Call List

from the whoops dept

When the US first instituted its Do Not Call list, there was some fear that unscrupulous telemarketers would actually use the list as a "good list" of people to call. In fact, many people were nervous to use the list at the beginning for just that reason. However, for the most part, there haven't been that many abuses of the list (there have certainly been some, but it's not nearly as widespread as many expected). Unfortunately, it appears the same is not true in Canada. The Canadian list works by allowing anyone to buy it -- supposedly so they can cleanse their own lists of any DNC numbers. But, it can also be used by unscrupulous scammers -- such as those offshore -- who apparently are buying the DNC list in order to have a "verified" list of people to call with scams. It's reached the point that many claim they're getting more telemarketing calls (for much more scammy reasons) than before.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
    identicon
    :Lobo Santo, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 11:26am

    Privacy

    The trick to not getting sales calls:

    (1) Never answer to phone numbers you don't know.

    (2) Have a void-mail message which goes like: "*doo doo doo!* (Those old AT&T tones...) You have reached the number you have dialed. If you have reached this number in error, please hang up and try again. ... ... Or you can leave a voice-mail after the beep. *beep*"

    I never get sales calls for long.

     

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  2.  
    icon
    bjc (profile), Jan 27th, 2009 @ 11:31am

    All the government would need to do to stop unwanted telemarketers is to make it illegal to spoof or alter your Caller ID info.

    Set up the system so when someone receives a call with false data, simply hit *whatever and the caller gets sent a nice fine.

    In fact, if the phone company really cared they would automatically block calls from 000000 or 01234567

    Easy and fair.

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Evil Mike, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 11:39am

    Re:

    Yeah, that's just what we need, more laws that will be brandished to hurt the average citizen and very rarely used against those for whom the laws were made to stop.

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    solvency ii, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 11:42am

    Terrible

    How ironic. When are the people going to be taken care of instead of corporations???

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Denis @ Ottawa, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 11:44am

    Y

    Wife and I got call display because it was getting so bad. Then this list came out! Woot! We signed up first day it was available and I was one of those who crashed the servers from so many request.

    Then, about a month later, we started getting even MORE calls. I would say our calls increased threefold easily. Now, any number that is 000-000-0000, 123-456-789 or private caller. Anyone who is calling long distance that we don't know e don't answer.

    Or, my wife picks up the phone and gives them crap for calling us and take us off the list. I keep reminding her that they are not Canadian so it does not matter, they are not obligated to. This list was the biggest FU ever.

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 11:56am

    That was a very good rendition of "doo doo doo!" Kudos!

    Since I only have a cell phone I get 0 sales/scam calls.

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    hegemon13, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:06pm

    Re:

    There is already a law against calling those on the do not call list. The problem is offshore scammers who are not in Canada's jurisdiction. No law will solve a problem caused by those who are outside the jurisdiction of the law. So, an individual loses their right to make an anonymous phone call, and the scammers keep right on calling, phony caller ID and all. Good thing you aren't in legislature. Too bad that so many people like you are.

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Alex, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:12pm

    But the real question is... WHY?? These people were knowledgeable and annoyed enough to sign up to a DNC list... do these companies really think they'll get any money out of calling them?

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Norm, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:14pm

    I wonder

    Why that doesn't happen to the US list too? Or is it not for sale? And if not for sale how do companies compare their call list with those on the DNC list?

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Mogilny, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:26pm

    Re:

    It takes only a few idiots to fund these scams. There is no shortage of idiots out there.

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Jesse, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:32pm

    Can't we just make telemarketing opt in. Instead of a do not call list, have a "green" list. Assume everyone else is out.

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:42pm

    What like to do...

    Is have them run through their whole spew so I can ax as many questions as I can think of.. Over and over.. Try to keep them on the phone as long as you can.. Then when it comes down to the end and it's time to commit to something.. Say, nah, I was just wanting to waste as much of you time as you are wasting mine.. Thanks for the call and feel free to call again if you like. I'd did that with the dudes that try to sell warranties for your cars. I hit 1 or whatever, talk to the sales guy for like 30 minutes.. Getting all the prices and plans then right at the end.. Nah.. Not interested.. Just wanted to waste your time (again in my case, being I did that like three times to them(they finally stopped calling after the third time)), thanks for the call and feel free to call again.. ;) Works like a champ.

    Same thing with spam emails that put an 888/866/800 number in the mail. Just call the up and start chatting for as long as you can keep them on the phone.. (They have to pay for inbound calls to their 8xx number and they don't like it when you say.. Oh.. just wasting your time and money).

     

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  13.  
    identicon
    Gracey, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:45pm

    Cell Phone

    [quote]Since I only have a cell phone I get 0 sales/scam calls.[/quote]


    mmmm, well they call my cell phone, and the number was NOT placed on our DNC list...nor is it listed.

    90% of the time, the cell is off but the "who called" list on my phone is usually full of numbers from telemarketers (they aren't all "scammers", some are just salesmen).

    Given my business uses my cell phone and home phone, I can't "not" answer the phone. Annoying as hell...that's what it is.

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 12:59pm

    Re: I wonder

     

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  15.  
    icon
    Steve R. (profile), Jan 27th, 2009 @ 1:08pm

    Need to go Further

    Prior to the November election we received an incredible number of junk calls. All of them had their caller ID blanked.

    All calls made to a recipient are an "invasion" of their privacy. Of course some calls are wanted (friends) and others not wanted (telemarketers). While we may not want regulation, I think that it is totally appropriate that every caller be legally obligated to disclose who they are.

    It is about time that Congress stops accepting the junk callers argument that they need to "hide" who they are to "facilitate business". Our credit system today is in shambles because of opaque business practices designed to "facilitate business". If you have something to "hide" then it would appear obvious that you are doing it for a nefarious reason.

    Now in terms of music piracy, there have been ideas floated that every CD sold should contain a "tax". Well lets apply it to the telemarketers, every call they make should be "taxed" and the collected fees used to subsidize our phone bills. So what if it "hurts" their business, their calls "hurts" us. After all the telemarketers are wasting our time and using our resources every time they call us up. We, as consumers, have rights too.

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    You never know, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 1:08pm

    Stands to reason... Now if they had to go through a switch board to get to you then things would be differant... The good old days did have thier good ideas...

     

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  17.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 1:20pm

    Re: Need to go Further

    Here Here!!! I had one company call me repeatedly even though I am on the US DNC list (I am a US resident in the US) and when I accepted one and got to a live person, I demanded the name of the company calling me and their business address. I was REFUSED that information. "Where are you working?" "I don't know" said the telemarketer. "You don't know where you go to work in the morning?" I said. "I'm NEW HERE!" and then she hung.

    I really, really wanted to file an FTC grievance on them.

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    Alexander Bell, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 1:24pm

    1. Make all business-to-consumer telemarketing illegal - no non-profits, no candidates, NOTHING!

    2. Install a fool proof trace system on all North American phone systems. Press a code in and the number is sent to a trace service.

    3. Service finds the perpetrators, dispatches local police who must handcuff and jail them. All foreign countries must participate in a extradition treaty or have phone service to/from the country blocked.

    4. Judge must require $1MM bail for each call reported to the trace service.

    5. When convicted, telemarketers receive 50 years to life.

    OR

    Just change your phone number. Never give it out. Get a phony number.

     

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  19.  
    icon
    Steve R. (profile), Jan 27th, 2009 @ 1:44pm

    Not the Consumer's responsiblity

    We as consumers should never accept this method of "fighting" back.
    "Just change your phone number. Never give it out. Get a phony number."

    The "inconvenience" of calling belongs to whoever is calling you up. The recipient of a call should not have to go through all sorts of evasive actions to protect themselves.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 1:54pm

    uhh

    I work as a telemarketer (not in us, not in canada) and a few things
    1) Not respecting the DNC list is uncommon. Careful you dont generalise the whole telemarkting buisniess because of a few idiots
    2) There is nothing wrong with hiding your number, a few reasons
    a) the company who hired you may not want it for different reasons. One of our biggest clients is an insurrens company, imagine if by word of mouth people started calling us regarding their inssuranes instead of the correct number
    b) Most people would, if they saw they had an unanswared call, try to call back. They wouldnt be able to as we are on outgoing lines only
    c) if people ask us directly where we work we would of couse answer them.... ;)

    amazing how negativ everyone feels toward telemarketers...i would claim that, is in almost every other buisness out there, only 1-2% of the companys are "scammers" the rest are just trying to make a buck like (almost) everyone else in the world.

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 1:59pm

    If telemarketers companies couldn't sell this way they would stop. Please don't buy from them (though feel free to talk to them as long as possible... putting them on hold... so that it ties up their lines from calling someone else). Also realize the person calling isn't the person making the decision to call you, they are some poor person making minimum wage who works for the person you should be mad at.

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 2:03pm

    Re:

    The reason people are negative towards telemarketers is that they are trying to "make a buck" with my dime. If they paid for my phone bill like advertisers pay for TV then they could use it to advertise to me. Since I pay, they shouldn't be allowed to use it without my permission.

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    TW Burger, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 2:30pm

    Paid Ads

    I like this idea. If we agree to have part or all of my phone bill paid by advertisers they have the right to call me. The phone company will always make sure the non paying telemarketers can not contact us because anyone trying to call without paying would be stealing the phone company's money, not ours. Subscribers that pay the full phone bill themselves are off limits and the phone company is fined if a customer is harassed.

     

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  24.  
    icon
    bjc (profile), Jan 27th, 2009 @ 3:16pm

    Re: I wonder

    I believe the US list requires you to upload the list YOU already have (if you are a telemarketer), then it is scrubbed of the people on the do-not-call list. If you don't already have my number, the US version isn't going to give it to you.

    If Canada is doing this ANY other way then the CRTC are worse idiots than we thought!

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    OldGeek, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 3:41pm

    Re: Yeah Right

    I've been in the IT field for awhile and have worked for several Telemarketing firms in the back room. For starters, the only time I've seen a DNC scrubbing is when the Feds started asking questions. Hiding your number is illegal, one firm really stopped liking me when I called the FCC. Finally every firm had a standard policy (that I've had to add to the script) to give the paying company info and not the tele firms. They were the only jobs I've ever walked out on in my life, and man did it feel good to get away from those slimy bunches.

     

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  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 3:45pm

    Oxymorons

    Government IT == Military Intelligence

     

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  27.  
    identicon
    AndrewTO, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 5:13pm

    The Full Story..

    Global News broke the story. They did a big investigation into this on the weekend. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cZldfCW7BI

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 6:23pm

    IT'S REALLY SIMPLE TO END THESE TELEMARKETING CALLS: ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS START JAILING DOMESTIC OFFENDERS AND BLOCK TRAFFIC FROM FOREIGN OFFENDERS ON A SYSTEM-WIDE BASIS. THE TRUTH IS THAT THE POLITICIANS & PHONE COMPANIES DO NOT WANT TO END TELEMARKETING BECAUSE THEY ARE PROFITING FROM IT. THAT'S WHY THEY MOCK YOUR INTELLIGENCE WITH PRETEND SOLUTIONS LIKE THE "DO NOT CALL" LIST. IF YOU WANT YOUR PRIVACY & PROPERTY RIGHTS BACK, YOU HAVE TO REMOVE THESE HOPELESSLY CORRUPT POLITICAL PARTIES FROM POWER AND FORCE THE PHONE COMPANIES TO START BLOCKING TELEMARKETERS. IT'S AS SIMPLE AS THAT.

     

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  29.  
    icon
    bjc (profile), Jan 27th, 2009 @ 7:50pm

    Re:

    Good points, but do you see that key just above your left side shift key, the one labelled Caps Lock? You might wanna click it just to see what happens.

    If that doesn't work, look for a big circular button and hold it down for a second or two.

     

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  30.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 10:45pm

    Re: Re: I wonder

    That's done if the telemarketer has a small set (fewer than 10) of phone numbers to check.

    Otherwise they really do let the telemarketer download the DNC numbers. They have a choice of getting it as a text or XML file.

    Check the "Accessing the List" section in the second link given above.

     

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  31.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 27th, 2009 @ 11:33pm

    "The reason people are negative towards telemarketers is that they are trying to "make a buck" with my dime. If they paid for my phone bill like advertisers pay for TV then they could use it to advertise to me. Since I pay, they shouldn't be allowed to use it without my permission."

    Not sure I follow you. Do you get any of the money the big TV companies earn by airing advertisments? My guess is no.

    From the sounds of it I sure am glad not working as a telemarketer in the US.

     

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  32.  
    icon
    Steve R. (profile), Jan 28th, 2009 @ 5:37am

    It is Wrong Not to Disclose

    So wrong =>"There is nothing wrong with hiding your number, a few reasons"

    Where is your respect for the consumer and honest business practices? If a company is unwilling to disclose something then it implies that they are not really being honest. Yet if we buy, the telemarketers want ALL our information to make sure they get paid. Those who "invade" your privacy must disclose who they are. Telemarketers don NOT have a right to trespass on you.

    Onetime, I guess I was feeling talkative, I asked the telemarketer if I had a problem with their product could I call him/her to get it "fixed". They responded that I would have to call "customer service", I responded that YOU (hypothetical)sold me the product so you should take care of it. Of course the conversation went nowhere. The point being, once you give them your money, you are screwed.

     

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  33.  
    identicon
    Rich Kulawiec, Jan 28th, 2009 @ 11:06am

    These things NEVER work

    Which, unfortunately, is a point lost on the occasional clueless newbie who wakes up in the morning and proposes a do-not-email list as the "solution" for spam. It is an axiom that any data put within reach of any marketer will inevitably be acquired, inventoried, sold, bought, bartered, used, abused -- until they have wrung every last tiny bit of utility out of it in a desperate search for profit. Thus, ANY proposed solution which involves providing them with MORE data is dead-on-arrival. It can instantly dismissed, and it should be.

     

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