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Robocall Crackdown 2019 Logo

Tired of robocalls? So are we. Today the FTC and state and federal partners announced Operation Call it Quits, an effort to go after robocallers. As part of the announcement, the FTC has new videos, infographics, and articles you can watch, read, and share at ftc.gov/calls.

You can read more in our press release, but the FTC actions announced include:

  • A Florida-based operation that the FTC alleges used illegal robocalls in a scheme to get people to pay to get their credit card interest rates lowered — which didn’t happen.
  • A money-making scheme that the FTC alleges used robocalls and online ads to get people to pay thousands of dollars for “program memberships” to get big earnings. But few people made any money buying into the program, and many lost their entire investment. Instead, they were told to make more robocalls to pitch program memberships and digital products to other people.
  • A serial dialer who settled charges that he operated a dialing platform that blasted out illegal calls for telemarking operations, including calls to telephone numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry, robocalls, and calls with faked caller ID information.
  • A telemarketer for the solar industry that the FTC alleges called people illegally, including millions of calls to people on the National Do Not Call Registry. The defendants called people to see if they were interested in home solar energy systems, and then transferred interested people to companies selling the solar products. The owners of the operation have agreed to a ban on placing robocalls and calling numbers on the Registry.

So what can you do about robocalls? If you get one:

Hang up.

Learn more at ftc.gov/calls.

Image Link to Unwanted Call Info

43 Comments


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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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BrookLyn1991
June 25, 2019
I use my service provider's blocking feature, NoMoRobo and the call block button my phone; still receive several calls each day. Why can't government agencies ban the sale and use of spoofing equipment in the U.S.? While it won't resolve the issue of calls from outside the U.S., it could cut down on the domestic level. There is no legitimate use for spoofing!
Nocalls9760
June 25, 2019
I can’t get rid of these worsen calls. Please help us all to get rid of them all. Thank you!
jerry
June 25, 2019
I block all phone numbers not in my accepted call numbers list. They can leave a message, but get a message I'm not accepting calls.
g33k
June 27, 2019

In reply to by jerry

It doesn't even work to unblock accepted numbers. I just got a scam call from my home number that had been spoofed. It's getting to where I won't answer my phone regardless. What if it is an emergency where my family is calling from my home number (that I use for business) and I didn't answer because I assume it's a scammer. So frustrating.
Going out of m…
June 25, 2019
Wish I could find away to block ALL international calls. I get 20 to 30 a day and I have no one I know out of the country to call me. All the apps want money to do it but they don't block them after I pay. I'm on call a lot so I have to have my phone on at all times ! when they call at 3,4 5am it's just so nerve wracking. They come from Russia, Africa and other places. It's awful. Help!
FTC Staff
June 25, 2019

In reply to by Going out of m…

You may want to ask your phone service provider about call-blocking options. This FTC article explains call-blocking choices for different types of phone service.

Also, callers can fake the number that shows up on your caller ID. Calls that seem to be from outside the US might not really be international calls.

BrookLyn1991
June 26, 2019

In reply to by FTC Staff

I use my provider's calling blocking feature, but it's limited to 30 numbers on the list at any given time. If that were my only option, the list would be full in a couple days. As long as spoofing equipment is readily available to the scammers, the calls will continue.
kml_xoxo
June 25, 2019
I get at least 300 or more robocalls a month. I can't waste the time to report them all to you individually. You don't give any other options.
sick of it
June 25, 2019
so I read this Consumer Info and you say to call block the numbers that be calling or ask our provider who we have served with. Well, guess what y'all, I have and I still keep on getting the same calls from a different number. Lourd, it is hard to be having all these blocked calls. Now, where in heavens these folks get so many different numbers from. Unblievable.
FTC Staff
June 25, 2019

In reply to by sick of it

If you use call-blocking technology that comes on your phone or from your phone carrier, you could stop a lot of calls at once.

For example, if you have a mobile phone and you download a call-blocking app to your phone, the app acts like a filter. The company that made the app uses information to predict which calls are probably scams, and stops those calls from coming through. You don't have to add numbers to your blocked list.

Read the FTC article to learn more about call-blocking choices for mobile phones, landline phones and people who get phone service over the internet.

Leons6kids
June 25, 2019
I've tried to block the calls but they call back on another number. I have blocked at least 50 and they keep coming. The same one as they open with "Hello, this is Mark (many other names) and I represent (different company each call). I do not call them back but they call me 8:00 am and 10:30 pm plus several during the day.
Ginavon
June 26, 2019

In reply to by Leons6kids

Me too they are using a rotating robocall machine that changes the numbers. The strangest thing is when I do answer they hang up on me! They are just verifying the number is a good number and will sell it. Do not answer EVER as it creates more calls. Also check the do not call registry because I signed up for a lifetime and when I changed carriers from VERISON to Metro Pcs somehow my number got removed from the Do Not Call Registry
FTC Staff
June 26, 2019

In reply to by Ginavon

When you register your number at www.DoNotCall.gov, it doesn't expire.

The FTC will remove your number from the Registry only if your number is  disconnected and reassigned, or if you ask to remove it.

Max2Tucker
June 25, 2019
Over 50% of the calls into my home are from unidentified or unrecognized names or numbers. I block those numbers and do not answer my phone.
Zach
June 25, 2019
The call blocking apps don't work anymore as it seems the scammers that call me up to 20 times each day spoof their numbers to look like my local exchange.
shirlr
June 25, 2019
I have reported many numbers that were robocalls to the FTC, with no response, nor any reduction in the calls. I get them all day long on my cell phone.
mandasman
June 26, 2019
I have been on the FTC.gov's DO NOT CALL LIST now for over 6 years and all 3 of my phones I have through Verizon is constantly receiving scammer calls! I thought about changing the phone numbers, but 2 of them are for my business, so that is a definitely no-no! And, as far as blocking them from my phone, they turn around in 3-5 minutes, they call right back from a number that might have just 1 of the 10 numbers different!!!!!!! So now what are you going to do MR. FTC/GOVERNMENT ???????????????????????????????? YOUR MOVE NOW!!!!!!!
FTC Staff
June 26, 2019

In reply to by mandasman

Follow the link in this blog to read about call-blocking options that don't require you to manually block each number.

For example, some call-blocking apps act like filters. The company behind the app uses call data or reports from users to predict which calls are illegal or likely scams and intercept the calls before they reach you. The FTC article explains that you can find a list of call-blocking apps for mobile phones at ctia.org.

People who get phone service over the internet or through a  traditional land line can also read about call-blocking choices.

BETH
June 26, 2019
I AM MYSTIFIED BY HOW THESE SCAMMERS CAN USE PHONE NUMBERS THAT CANNOT BE TRACED AND EVEN HAVE THE NAMES OF WELL-KNOWN COMPANIES SHOW UP ON CALLER ID. Why are there no simple to understand laws to prohibit anyone from using a false name or phone numbers that identify as anyone or anything other than the duly registered owner or entity? Currently, it truly feels as if the laws regulating business practices, phone use/abuse and computer use/abuse (as well as the almost total inability to control wire transfers) are more in favor of protecting the criminals or at least making it as difficult as possible to find and prosecute the criminals.
Mandleister
June 26, 2019
I've blocked at least 50 of the auto insurance robocalls but they just keep using different numbers.
Greekgal3235
June 27, 2019
WHY does the FCC allow the sale of spoof-ware? My card was stolen and used to buy this spoofware for $29.99 !! If the government can use satellites to spot license plate numbers from space then fixing this robocall stuff should be a piece of cake!! STOP SELLING THIS SOFTWARE!!
nohurt41
June 27, 2019
So the idea to report into do not call is a waste of time as no repercussion is ever accomplished. I suggest to start charging these companies and people a charge for each call and see how much money would be left in their operating budget after a month.
FTC Staff
July 10, 2019

In reply to by nohurt41

The Do Not Call list was created to stop sales calls from real companies. If you registered your number on the Do Not Call Registry and you're still getting calls, the calls are probably from scammers.

This blog is about enforcement actions by the FTC and state and federal agencies against robocallers who the FTC alleges used illegal robocalls.

Jeff
June 14, 2021

In reply to by FTC Staff

Most scam calls are from spoofed numbers. They are relentless. Last Saturday they called my 82 year old mom's phone 12 times. The calls were every 10 to 30 minutes. This scam has been calling my mom's number for years now; never answered, but left message every time. Wasn't there legislation passed and signed that phone companies had to start using call authentication to stop calls with spoofed numbers? When are consumers going to get any relief? Do we just have to live with like the Administration says we have to live with cyber attacks and ransom ware? Actions by the FTC and phone companies are unacceptable.
slim
June 28, 2019
non of what you say works, I have had my numbers on "donotcall" for over ten years and reup it every 3 years and nothing stops them. You realize they use our minutes! Come up with something better?????
FTC Staff
July 10, 2019

In reply to by slim

The National Do Not Call Registry was created to stop sales calls from real companies. If your number is on the Registry and you still get calls, they are probably from scammers.

You can use call-blocking to stop unwanted calls. Read the FTC article about call blocking for mobile phones, land lines and phone that get service over the internet.

slim
June 28, 2019
if u don't recognize the number don't answer it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!It has stopped a lot of the robos!
Why???
June 28, 2019
"..number. This is an enforcement action executed by the US higher authorities stating your social security number going to be blocked. Intending your serious attention ignoring this will be an intentional second attempt to avoid initial appearance before a magistrate judge or a grand jury for a federal criminal offense. This is the final attempt to reach you. To resolve this issue immediately and to speak to a federal agent call back number 833-331-1155. I repeat 833-331-1155. Thank you." I'll take my chances when the FBI comes to pick me up. BTW my block list is full. Fix it government.
LouLou
October 08, 2019

In reply to by Why???

I get this same phone call about 3 or 4 times a week. I don't answer the message and don't call them back. I have called Social Security and the ftc about it and given them the phone number but the calls keep on coming in.
Someone
July 01, 2019
How do we have self-driving cars, but the government can't stop robocalls?
Renee
July 01, 2019
We got a new landline and the calls began pouring in about 40 a day...not exaggerated either. As we hadn't given the number out I just waited...only used to call out and didn't answer. Deleted messages left. Now down to 1-2 a day but it took about 15 months to get to this level.
Renee
July 01, 2019
We got a new landline and the calls began pouring in about 40 a day...not exaggerated either. As we hadn't given the number out I just waited...only used to call out and didn't answer. Deleted messages left. Now down to 1-2 a day but it took about 15 months to get to this level.
Orlandoom
July 02, 2019
I keep getting phone calls from my own number. This has happened 4-5 times a day over the past few weeks on least 4 out of 7 days. Please find a way to stop these annoying calls.
Rodandreel
July 03, 2019

In reply to by Orlandoom

Have gotten the same. Try blocking your own number on your phone. Not sure if this causes any other problems, like with voice mail?
Notmyemail
July 02, 2019
I’ve been on the Do Not Call registry for years but still receiving tons of unwanted calls. I re-registered my number and started receiving more calls than ever before. Somehow this makes me feel as though the National Do Not Call list is not a safe place to list your phone number.
Joan
July 03, 2019
I can block calls to my phone but recently the calls show on caller ID as coming from people I know. Of course when I answer, it is a robo concerning credit cards. If I block the number, I block my friends' numbers. A real problem.
FRUSTRATED
July 03, 2019
Well I've done all of the above and I've gotten the same or worse results. The worst part is that it DISRUPTS MY BUSINESS! That should be a crime! When we're short staffed, we don't have time to run across our store, leave a paying customer, to answer a robocall. This really should be a crime. Small businesses shouldn't have to deal with this!!
Christopher33703
July 09, 2019
I have received numerous robo-calls which I don't answer and they don't leave a message. I block them and they call from another number. Usually they are from a number with the same area code and first three digits of my number. Now I've been getting text messages, several times a day, regarding surveys for Amazon, CVS, Walmart. One text message came in at 2:00 in the morning. No phone number attached, just a name "Maybe: Monica" Frustrated!
willard yuna
July 10, 2019
i was called by card services when i told person i did not have a credit card and told him not to call he said he would call from another number he then cursed me and threatened to hunt m e down and kill me.must be a idiot not happy at all n
Pat in Redondo Beach
July 10, 2019
The telcom companies must be brought to task to integrate blocking deeply into their infrastructure. They can no longer offer open, exploitable pipes to the masses because they will be used to torment people in the course of their quest for ever-increasing profit.
David
June 25, 2020
I am reading this a year later, and just got 4 robocalls so far today. Do your job FTC. This article is a joke.
Wytt.Don't use…
July 25, 2020
I used to get about 5 robo calls per week. Now that the ftc is doing something about it I get 10 of these calls a day!!!
Do't use your …
November 25, 2020
Do not want any more calls from telemarketers