A man in Texas, who received between 10–24 spam robocalls and texts per day, tried to stop the madness by listing his number on the National Do Not Call Registry. When that didn't work, the man — financial accounting consultant Dan Graham — says he filed around two dozen BBB complaints, but that didn't help either. Finally, he hit the telescammers where it hurt, filing around 50 small claims cases — and has made $75,000 in settlements so far, according to MSN.
Now Graham hopes others can follow suit to make this kind of telemarketing harassment no longer worthwhile to the scammers behind it.
"If people knew how to push back and started doing so, we could make this kind of endless spam unaffordable for the people who do it," he said, according to MSN. "The hope is that there's enough of us who stand up, start pushing back, that it becomes more expensive for companies to negligently hire these telemarketers and participate in these telemarketing practices … more expensive to do that than the benefit they receive from it."
Last April, Graham filed his first lawsuit in Travis County against a company violating the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
"In an effort to address a growing number of telephone marketing calls, Congress enacted in 1991 the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)," according to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
It restricts telemarketing calls and the use of autodialed or prerecorded calls or text messages.
In 2012, the FCC said the agency revised the rules to require telemarketers, "(1) to obtain prior express written consent from consumers before robocalling them, (2) to no longer allow telemarketers to use an "established business relationship" to avoid getting consent from consumers when their home phones, and (3) to require telemarketers to provide an automated, interactive 'opt-out' mechanism during each robocall so consumers can immediately tell the telemarketer to stop calling."
"It's gone from just the calls that are, 'Hey, we want to sell you a car…we want to sell insurance,' to text messages that are, I would say, a blatant fraud. 'You won an iPad,' or you know, 'You won an iPhone' or 'Your phone's infected and you need to download this anti-virus software,' things like that," he explained. …
Graham has gotten some relief from the calls and texts after the lawsuits. …
Graham explained anyone getting these calls and texts should report it to the FTC and find out the company behind it, then write reviews and post what happened on social media.
He said Travis County has made the process to file very consumer-friendly and you can do a lot online.