Learn to spot and avoid common scams with the AARP Fraud Resource Center.
by Sid Kirchheimer, From the AARP Bulletin Print Edition, July 9, 2009
Q. Is there a new way to stop telemarketing calls?
A. Yes. Since Dec. 1, the Federal Trade Commission has required all prerecorded telemarketing calls to include a “quick and easy” opt-out system to stop future calls by that company. Typically, for calls you answer, that means saying a certain word or pressing a number that should be provided in the recording, such as "Press 1 to remove your number" or "Say 'remove' to stop future calls." Once you have opted out, that call must immediately be disconnected and the calling seller or fundraiser cannot make future calls to you.
Messages left on your voice mail must have a toll-free number that connects to an automated opt-out system. Any prerecorded sales or fundraising calls that do not meet these criteria are subject to fines.
If you receive such prerecorded calls that don't offer an opt-out, and can identify the caller's number on Caller ID, file complaints at www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov or call 1-877-382-4357 toll-free.
Sid Kirchheimer writes about consumer and health issues.
Please leave your comment below.
You must be logged in to leave a comment.
Get tips and resources to protect yourself from fraud and see the latest scam alerts in your state.
Members save 15% on in-store purchases of frozen yogurt, treats and apparel.
Exclusive program for members from The Hartford.
AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.
You are leaving AARP.org and going to the website of our trusted provider. The provider’s terms, conditions and policies apply. Please return to AARP.org to learn more about other benefits.
Your email address is now confirmed.
Manage your email preferences and tell us which topics interest you so that we can prioritize the information you receive.
Explore all that AARP has to offer.
In the next 24 hours, you will receive an email to confirm your subscription to receive emails
related to AARP volunteering. Once you confirm that subscription, you will regularly
receive communications related to AARP volunteering. In the meantime, please feel free
to search for ways to make a difference in your community at