If you answer the phone and hear a recorded message instead of a live person, it’s a robocall. You’ve probably gotten these calls about political candidates or charities asking for donations. These robocalls are legal. But if the recording is a sales message and you haven’t given your written permission to get calls from the company on the other end, the call is illegal. In addition to the phone calls being illegal, the pitch may also be a scam.
According to the Ulster County District Attorney’s Division of Consumer Affairs, if you get a robocall:
- Hang up. Don’t press 1 to speak to a live operator and don’t press any other number to get your number off the list. If you respond by pressing any number, it will probably lead to more robocalls.
- Consider contacting your phone provider and ask them to block the number (there may be a charge for that service). Remember telemarketers change Caller ID information easily and often, so it might not be worth paying a fee to block a number that will change.
- Report your experience to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) online at www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov or by calling 1-888-382-1222.
Consumer Affairs can be reached at 340-3260.