Your Cell Phone and Telemarketers

From the “Do Your Homework” files...

Originally, I was appalled by the news sent to me in the following email:

Subject: Fw: Cell phone numbers go public next month...


REMEMBER: Cell Phone Numbers Go Public next month.............

REMINDER... all cell phone numbers are being released to telemarketing companies and you will start to receive sales calls.


Even if the message is saved on your phone, you will be charged for the minutes to listen to it.

.......To prevent this, call the following number from your cell phone:....... 1-888-382-1222 ........

It is the National DO NOT CALL list. It will only take a minute of your time. It blocks your number for five (5) years. You must call from the cell phone number you want to have blocked. You cannot call from a different phone number.


You can also go to: to register.

But then I quickly did my research and found out that, thankfully, none of this is true! The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) continues to protect cellular consumers, making nearly all telemarketing calls to cell phones illegal. You can confirm this at It seems that hoax and “scare tactic” emails like this have been around since early 2006.

But the email I received did serve a very worthwhile function for me. It made me realize that many people still don’t know they can opt out of many telemarketing calls (primarily to their landlines) simply by registering at the National Do Not Call Registry or by calling 1-888-382-1222. Besides your landline, I highly recommend you also register your cell phone number (why not, it’s free?).

The National Do Not Call Registry started in June 2003. Back then, it was a bit of a pain to register and you had to renew your registration every few years. Now things are a lot easier. First, once you register a number, it is permanent. Second, both the website and phone number process has been streamlined. I prefer and recommend you use the phone number, 1-888-382-1222. You must be calling from the number you want to place on the do-not-call list for registration to be successful. The entire process takes about 25 seconds. If you use the website, you have a two step process which includes confirming your choice via email...yuck. If you can’t call the number from the phone you’d like to put on the list (e.g. Google Voice numbers), then you are forced to use the website. Total time and effort is around 5 minutes.

Either way, the National Do Not Call Registry is well worth taking advantage of.

Now if they could also block the harassing phone calls I get that are intended for Robert Mooring. Seems Robert has been passing my home office phone number off as his for a few years and he owes people money. I regularly hear from collection agents looking for him. So, if you know Robert’s real phone number, please pass it along to me. I’ll make sure to place him on their DO CALL list!