FTC Outlaws Pre-recorded Sales Calls
from the but-will-they-enforce-it? dept
Over the past few months, at least twice a week, I’ve received a phone call on my mobile phone with a stern (almost angry) recorded voice saying “this is your second warning that the factory warranty on your vehicle is about to expire.” Of course, the factory warranty on my car isn’t about to expire, and considering that I’ve received about 30 of these calls, it’s difficult to believe it’s the “second” warning. Apparently, I’m not the only one to receive these calls. An informal poll of friends found that more than 50% of them were all receiving the same bogus calls. While those already broke various telemarketing rules, it appears that the FTC is looking to further crack down, announcing that all pre-recorded telemarketing sales calls are banned without a signed, written agreement allowing the calls. Informational calls (non-sales calls) such as informing you that a flight has been delayed are allowed — but sales calls are not.
Of course, the big question is whether or not the FTC will actually enforce the new rules and go after violators. Part of the rule change does give the FTC more leeway in going after those responsible for the messages, but until the FTC really does start shutting some of these operations down, you can bet they’ll continue making the automated pre-recorded calls. I’m sure I’ll be hearing about the imminent expiration of the factory warranty on my vehicle for some time.