Monday, January 28, 2008

Do Not Call

I was watching Bush lie to the nation, talking back to the TV telling him how full of crap he is, when I got a phone call. I don't get a whole lot of them, and like too many recently, it was a call from a 12-digit number starting with 44 - 442074121208 to be exact (I looked up 44 as a country code. It's the UK.). I've gotten way too many of those calls over the past few months, and every call has begun with 44.

At first, I would just hang up on them without ever speaking to anyone since it looked like a call from outside the country, and nobody I personally know outside the country has my phone number. When I did listen, it was some company promising to lower my interest rates on credit cards, although the recorded message never identified which of several card companies they might be calling from. So I'd just hang up. After a few times, however, I decided I'd listen a little more and see if they offered a button to push to keep them from calling again. They did. I pushed "2" on more than one call, but the calls continued to come in. Not very often, really - sometimes a week or more would go without a call.

But there shouldn't have been any calls because I'm on the government's Do Not Call list and have been for several years. With only a few exceptions, it's worked pretty much as I expected it would.

This time I answered, and as the recorded message played, I got a pen and piece of paper. The option to push 2 on the phone came, I pushed it, and then started to write down the number showing on the phone. I was interrupted by a person coming on the line, so I switched gears. The woman on the other end started her spiel, but I interrupted her by asking what company she represented. She said "Financial Services" which isn't very helpful. It's just as evasive as them pretending to be calling from a credit card company I do business with. I wrote it down. Then I asked where the company was located and she said "Atlanta, GA." I wrote that down, wondering whether either bit of info was true. I've since Googled "financial services atlanta" and have found National Financial Services Group, but she didn't say "National" and that company appears to be concentrating on doing business in the Southeast, not the Northwest. I don't think that company was calling me. There was no company in Atlanta called Financial Services that Google came up with.

I then asked her if I had a business relationship with the company, which I'm very sure I don't since I'd never heard of them before. She asked if I had a Visa or Master Card, something a legit company calling me about credit cards would already know, one would think. I asked how her company got my number, and she said through Experian, one of the major credit reporting agencies. I don't know whether to believe that or not, although I wouldn't doubt that any of those agencies would sell numbers.

I then let her know my phone number is on the Do Not Call list and I shouldn't even be getting this call. I also told her I'd gotten previous calls and had pressed 2 on my phone on at least two occasions to stop further calls. She asked for my number and since I'm sure it's already on record there somewhere, I gave it again, and that was the end of the call.

Since I'm a phone drone myself, I didn't enjoy giving the woman a hard time, but her company (or probably her company's client, since she probably works for an outsource company like I do) had no business calling a number on the Do Not Call list. I wasn't very polite, but I didn't yell, didn't use profanity, and didn't insult her or even her employer. But she could have no doubt I was not pleased to be having that conversation.

After getting off the phone, I went to www.donotcall.gov and filed a complaint, listing the phone number as shown on my phone, and the company name the woman had given, even though I'm pretty sure it's bogus since Google couldn't find it. It's the first time I've put through a complaint on that website, mostly because there have only been one or two occasions before this outfit started calling and I didn't get information needed for a complaint then.

I won't be surprised if that company robocalls me again, and if they do, I'll file another complaint.

1 comment:

Samantha said...

Same company has been bugging me also. This time, I reported them to the FTC. Perhaps that will have more of an effect. What they are doing is extremely misleading and should be illegal. Maybe you could try that. At least you get a number when they call...shows up as "out of area" on my caller ID.