The National Do Not Call Registry
1921Unwanted calls from salespeople and service providers can become a nuisance for the average American family. Calls placed by auto dialing software could call an individual number upwards of ten times a day. This is why the National Do Not Call Registry was initially created. The database was created by the Federal Trade Commission, or FTC, in 2003. Since that time, residents of the United States have been able to register on the list. Adding a name and phone number to this list makes it necessary for telemarketers to stop calling the number within 30 days. Before this database was created, landlines and cell phone numbers could be inundated with nonstop calls from all kinds of sales people. These calls could come in early in the morning, late at night or at other inconvenient times. The National Do Not Call list was an immediate success with consumers, who enjoyed the way it helped them protect their privacy and stop unwanted calls. It also gave them a place to report any violators and enforce action against aggressive callers who did not respect the list. In 2007, legislation was passed to make the National Do Not Call Registry work even better for consumers. The Do Not Call Improvement Act of 2007 eliminated the five year time limit for registration. Previously, registrants had to renew their number on the list after five years, or risk being called again. After the passage of this expansion, a one time registration on the list is now sufficient to keep the number on the list permanently. There are some disadvantages to being registered on the Do Not Call list. Some of the callers who are prohibited from dialing any number on the list are legitimate businesses looking to increase sales through exceptional promotions. These can save the consumer money on goods or services they may well need. To avoid this happening, consumers can keep from registering on the Do Not Call list but ask individual companies to place them on their respective lists. This will keep the same organizations from calling a number over and over again. Any consumer who wants to preserve his or her privacy can register for the Do Not Call list online by visiting www.donotcall.gov. Any unwanted calls should then stop within 30 days. If they do not, the consumer can report the caller to the FTC, who will take appropriate action to follow up.