Alert
Close

AARP Applauds Fix for Medicare Doctor Payments. President Obama signs bipartisan measure into law. Learn more

Ask Sid

Attack of the Robocalls

Q. I still get unwanted telemarketing robocalls, which makes me wonder: Are certain phone numbers or area codes targeted more often than others?

A. When it comes to registrants of the National Do Not Call Registry, a new report finds that certain area codes generate the most complaints about prerecorded robocalls, which are made with automated calling systems that dial phone numbers in sequence. In 2009, area code 480 in Arizona topped the list, followed by Georgia’s 770, Virginia’s 703, Maryland’s 410, and New York’s 718.

The Federal Trade Commission has taken steps to try to stop robocalls—especially since new rules went into effect on Sept. 1 that bar most calls made to any consumer who doesn’t provide written permission. In December, the FTC sued three companies for violating Do Not Call rules, alleging that they made hundreds of thousands of robocalls falsely promising reduced interest rates on credit cards.

Legitimate telemarketers are following the new rules and updating their calling lists every month as required by FTC regulations. But less-than-honorable marketers continue to make illegal live calls and robocalls to registrants, often peddling fraudulent schemes.

Your best bet: Do not answer your phone if your caller ID indicates a hidden or unrecognized phone number.

Sid Kirchheimer writes about health and consumer issues.

 

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Advertisement

The Cheap Life

Jeff Yeager Cheap Life Ultimate Cheapskate AARP YouTube web series save money

Catch the latest episode of The Cheap Life starring Jeff Yeager, AARP's Ultimate Cheapskate. Watch

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Credit safeguards with AARP® Identity Theft Protection from TrustedID®.

AARP Credit card from Chase

Members can get cash back rewards on purchases with the AARP® Credit Card from Chase.

Man using cell phone outdoors

Members save on monthly service & usage fees and get free activation with Consumer Cellular.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Advertisement

Advance your skills. Transform your career.

Explore your learning possibilities.