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FTC Whacks "Rachel From Card Holder Services"

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the what-about-ann?-don't-forget-ann dept.

Government 289

coondoggie writes "Just two weeks after it challenged the public to come up with a better technological way to stop incessant robocalling, the Federal Trade Commission pulled the plug on five mass calling companies it said were allegedly responsible for millions of illegal pre-recorded calls from 'Rachel' and others from 'Cardholder Services.' 'At the FTC, Rachel from Cardholder Services is public enemy number one,' said FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz at the announcement of the cases."

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I know that bitch! (5, Funny)

conureman (748753) | about 2 years ago | (#41843781)

How she got my number is beyond me.

Re:I know that bitch! (5, Interesting)

Penguinisto (415985) | about 2 years ago | (#41844157)

I just hope they take the company owners, strap them to chairs, and force them to watch nothings adverts/infomercials, and while they sleep force them to hear robocall recordings. Do it 24/7/365, a' la A Clockwork Orange.

What they do with "Rachael" is not my concern. >:(

Re:I know that bitch! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844185)

Would tying them up and forcing them to watch the 10-hour Nyan Cat video be considered cruel and unusual punishment?

No. (2)

Weaselmancer (533834) | about 2 years ago | (#41844231)

I'd call it a good start. Let them catch their breath, think their ordeal is over... then give them 10 hours of They're Taking The Hobbits To Isengard.

Re:No. (1)

hoboroadie (1726896) | about 2 years ago | (#41844411)

Only one time through? Your prosecutor sucks.

Re:No. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844471)

Followed by Rebecca Forstadt singing Stage Fright from Robotech for another 10 hours.

24/7/365? (1)

Bill Evans (467724) | about 2 years ago | (#41844491)

What is that, the number of hours in seven years?

Re:I know that bitch! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844209)

Well, she gave my name to Heather.

I know because Heather called me a couple hours ago.

Re:I know that bitch! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844287)

Your boyfriend Tyrone has been screwing her behind your back. She got it from him.

Who's Rachel? (1)

tgmarks (2624405) | about 2 years ago | (#41843789)

And why is public enemy number one some simple average american girl?

Re:Who's Rachel? (-1, Flamebait)

Gallomimia (1415613) | about 2 years ago | (#41843915)

Because she is a slut, and conservative christian politicians fucking hate that.

Re:Who's Rachel? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843975)

Isn't that their daughter?

Re:Who's Rachel? (0)

jeffmeden (135043) | about 2 years ago | (#41844047)

Isn't that their daughter?

Congratulations, you have arrived at the crux of the dilemma of American Society. Fortunately, the thing about being a hypocrite is that you aren't expected to be consistent, and you are almost always relatable.

Re:Who's Rachel? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844269)

Yep. She got pregnant because her parents refused to let her go to sex ed then she got an abortion behind their backs

Re:Who's Rachel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844315)

Behind their backs? Heck, they drove her to the clinic - they know where it is because they're usually outside of it protesting and screeching in the faces of the people going in.

Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (3, Insightful)

dpbsmith (263124) | about 2 years ago | (#41843793)

Simple as that. Glad to know someone was taking it seriously. And your next impossible mission, should you choose to accept it... "the chimney company."

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843899)

ohh, what's there scam?

I must say, good job! I was getting these multiple times a day to my cell for a while. I started answering and saying nothing. It dropped to a couple of times a month. At any rate, lets lock these cancers on society (no offense intended to cancer) in a room and throw away the room.

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844053)

How about they end caller ID spoofing? I'm paying for caller ID, why should the phone company allow callers to lie to me who they are?

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (1)

Pentium100 (1240090) | about 2 years ago | (#41844223)

How can you spoof the caller ID anyway? I mean shouldn't the telephone company know the caller ID of whoever is initiating the call (to know where to send the invoice for the call)? Is this some sort of hack using ISDN since I don't think anything like this would be possible on analog lines. Even with ISDN, shouldn't the company filter out the malformed (spoofed) requests, just like most ISPs do with packets that have spoofed source IP?

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (5, Informative)

realityimpaired (1668397) | about 2 years ago | (#41844399)

How can you spoof the caller ID anyway? I mean shouldn't the telephone company know the caller ID of whoever is initiating the call (to know where to send the invoice for the call)?

They do know, when the call originates in their network. When it passes off to another network, they only know which network it came from, and who *that network* says it is. The honour system is what keeps ATT and Verizon (and so forth) from passing deliberately bad information between each other (and the threat of pissed off customers). That's how spoofing caller ID works... when you pass off into another network, give them bad information about the identity. If the call originates from a VOIP phone, especially an international VOIP phone, then there isn't much control over what information gets passed to your local carrier. And you can't simply block all VOIP lines, because there are legitimate VOIP carriers in the market, too.

Obligatory disclaimer: I work for a phone company, though in a different LOB.

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (1)

SuperTechnoNerd (964528) | about 2 years ago | (#41844433)

the telephone company know the caller ID of whoever is initiating the call They use ANI which is how 911 gets your number, which is not spoofable. So the phone company always knows who is really calling. On almost any non pots phone system it is trivial to set up caller ID any way you want.

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844463)

It is with leased lines (I don't recall if it's ISDN or T-1s). The problems is it's not a malformed request, the request is properly formed, it just doesn't contain properly identifying infomration. The phone company doesn't KNOW the information is fake.

The reason for this is thus:

I have a company with a PBX with 100 people behind it, I want to genuinely provide the name of the person at my company who is calling. My pbx passes on the information to the phone company, which intern passes it on to your phone. The phone company couldn't do this themselves, because they don't know who is assigned what extension (or even who works for me).

I suppose they could prepend the information about who they got the information from. Then I supposed you could trace as far back as the owner of the PBX.

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (3, Interesting)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 2 years ago | (#41844479)

No, the telephone company knows trunking information. Remember that, the "Recieving" customer isn't getting billed... so our phone system was never designed to care who initiated the call. All your local switch knows is that the call is coming in on Trunk XYZ from some neighboring phone company... that company got it from somewhere else... and on and on. Caller ID was introduced much later and is just basically extra data tacked onto the call. It was designed not to be all that accurate intentionally. Imagine working at a bank and calling one of your customers. You want the banks phone number to show up, not your desk phone. Now that we're in the situation that we're in, it all looks very short sighted... but remember when all these systems were designed there was no VOIP systems. In order to initiate a call you needed a phone company to do that for you, and they would need to be complicit in your fraud. But now with VOIP services everywhere, with a little bit of knowledge you can do just about anything you want.

Re:Congratulations, FTC, and thanks! (1)

Scutter (18425) | about 2 years ago | (#41844469)

Just like almost anything else in life, there are plenty of legitimate reasons for spoofing Caller-ID, but it's ruined by the people who abuse it for illegal purposes.

Explains why she never called me back... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843811)

Met her at a bar the other night. Don't completely remember her name, but it was something like Rachel FromCardHolderServices, yeah something like that...

Re:Explains why she never called me back... (3, Funny)

webmistressrachel (903577) | about 2 years ago | (#41844507)

Did you buy her lots of drinks and leave with nothing? Yeah. that was me.

Halleluja! (5, Interesting)

chill (34294) | about 2 years ago | (#41843831)

I have been receiving no less than 3 calls a week for the last 6 months from "Card Services" with this robocall. The numbers were always different, so blocking didn't help.

Often the calls came in as late as 9:00 p.m., which was seriously annoying.

Re:Halleluja! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844119)

I have been receiving no less than 3 calls a week for the last 6 months from "Card Services" with this robocall. The numbers were always different, so blocking didn't help.

Often the calls came in as late as 9:00 p.m., which was seriously annoying.

Might be a little early to celebrate. I just got a call from them at 10:41AM (EDT) this morning.

Re:Halleluja! (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844147)

There is a reason the numbers are always different.

Not many know that caller ID is in no way reliable or secure. If you have a PRI/BRI/digital phone circut/whatever (Pretty much anything but an analog POTS line) you can specify the calling party number however you like. It doesn't even need to be a valid phone number! (It's fun to call your friends with the caller ID number of '666' and speak in a creepy voice)

Legitimately, this is so you can treat your physical lines as an aggregate pool in a phone system so your user can have the correct caller ID from any outgoing line in the pool.

Technically, however, it's illegal to spoof your caller ID for the purposes of evading identification. The caller ID number should resolve to something you can call back on. Either that, or it should report as caller ID blocked. (You can request that the phone company block all caller-id blocked calls.)

Nowadays, the law (correctly, imo) pretty much makes running profitable robocall operations illegal. Since for-profit robocallers are now fly by night illegal operations anyway, they flaunt the caller ID spoofing laws.

Re:Halleluja! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844163)

Six months? I've received those calls for something like 6 years. There is nothing that will make them stop calling 3 times a week. The FTC has fuck this one up big time. 200,000 complaints a month for four years and they've finally shut a few companies down. WTF? People should be going to jail by now. Find the call rooms and punish everyone for fraud.

Don't try talking to the operators of these calls. They're abusive or they just hang up fast. I once tried to play along, but they told me I wasn't eligible, so they called me again two days later.

Re:Halleluja! (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844169)

Not so fast with the joy of victory there Bubba Chill, I received one of these calls about half an hour ago. Plus TFA says that the FTC filed complaints in court - not that the companies were shut down. So as always, the summary may have embellished the truth a bit in order to make the front page.

Also, remember what's happening next week? It's an election. One major party (R) and one notable second string party (L) have vowed to reduce federal bureaucracy to that American business will be free to go about the business of American business without interference from burdensome government regulations and oversight. Can you image reducing government regulation and bureaucracy by eliminating the FTC trying to enforce the do not call list? I know, that's an extremely unpopular (and troll-worthy) example of where deregulation could take us but it is an example of how reducing government regulation of business can lead to undesirable (for most consumers) business practices.

Re:Halleluja! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844279)

3 a week, consider yourself lucky. I get so many that I had to invest in a home phone that I could assign sound files to numbers and just leave numbers not in my call directory as an empty sound file.

I've tried all sort of things using an old computer running Linux to filter calls. At one point had the computer pick up the call, feed the input through a dictation program to figure out what was said int he first few seconds of the call searching for the almost always used phrases to call some odd number and then dropping the call or putting it through depending upon the results. Sadly it annoyed legitimate callers so much that I just couldn't use the system for very long. Another point I moved on to documentation for robocall systems I could find info online about, with the goal of gaining control over them to shut them down. Despite having so many vectors of attack from those documents, I only got any of it to work on a couple systems, even then I wasn't able to gain any notable access to the configuration because it just wasn't exposed to the phone side of the system, at best I could tie them up with enough commands to keep them busy for awhile.

Re:Halleluja! (1)

hoboroadie (1726896) | about 2 years ago | (#41844307)

The only call I've ever received other than Card Services on our new Comcast landline has been the collectors because of tweakers that got a pay-day loan on an out-of-date check they found whilst looting my place. No one but Rachel and Comcast know that number.
Won't someone think of the poor telemarketers? I presume if I didn't hang up then some zombie would've then tried to engage me in conversation.

Re:Halleluja! (1)

dark12222000 (1076451) | about 2 years ago | (#41844437)

I had similar problems. I finally talked to someone and had a several hour screaming match filled with legal threats and personal insults, after which the calls stopped for me.

YES! Kill the sluts (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843837)

Rachel has been calling me for years and the ho needed to be taken down. Nothing works to stop the bitch. Screaming into the phone, swearing at them, putting the phone down and not talking, pretending to be a mindless fool who can't find their cards and keeping them on the line for long periods of time. This outfit is just so lame. I had recently recorded the tones that are played when the call was transferred by pressing "1" so I could dial them directly and start bothering them.

Re:YES! Kill the sluts (5, Interesting)

gauauu (649169) | about 2 years ago | (#41844483)

I don't know how they actually get any "business" -- the last 3 times they've called me, I've tried playing along to see how the scam works. Somewhere along the line, as I'm telling them what my current interest rate is, they always hang up on me. It blows my mind.

One time, though, I had fun -- my other routine is to try to explain to the poor schmuck on the line (who is probably an underpaid normal person who can't find a better job) that they are working for scammers and probably should find a different job. One lady from "Card Services" started yelling at me about how they weren't scammers, they were a organization that wants to help people and that they never break the law, and that my phone number must not actually be on the do-not-call list if they called me, because they follow the rules. It was hilarious, she carried on for 5 or 10 minutes shouting at me, and she sounded like she actually believed it.

Re:YES! Kill the sluts (1)

Genda (560240) | about 2 years ago | (#41844513)

It seems the FTC has identified the miscreants. How about a couple million people converge on these places and the government just looks the other way for about... oh 10 hours. Problem solved with extreme prejudice!

My new top issue in the 2012 election (5, Funny)

tfocker4 (2750497) | about 2 years ago | (#41843847) giving whoever took care of this one billion dollars.

foghorn? (5, Interesting)

Speare (84249) | about 2 years ago | (#41843859)

I hope the pre-recorded foghorn caller is included. I think it's offering some travel package, but since the first thing you hear is a loud lighthouse foghorn sound, I haven't listened to the pitch for the last several years. They've been attacking my office line about 3 times a year for the past decade, from different caller ID numbers.

Re:foghorn? (2)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | about 2 years ago | (#41843911)

I am pretty sure you are supposed to think that sound is a cruise ship horn. I was getting that on my company issued cellphone for awhile, although I have not gotten it for about a month now.

Re:foghorn? (1)

OrigamiMarie (1501451) | about 2 years ago | (#41844033)

I get that one on my cell phone sometimes. So annoying.

Re:foghorn? (1)

JDG1980 (2438906) | about 2 years ago | (#41844055)

I've gotten those. After the foghorn someone says "This is your Captain speaking" so I assume it probably is indeed a cruise ship package of some sort. I didn't get any further than the first voice clip before hanging up.

Re:foghorn? (1)

happylight (600739) | about 2 years ago | (#41844067)

I got that on my cell phone just this morning.

Re:foghorn? (1)

Antipater (2053064) | about 2 years ago | (#41844145)

That one, at least, is not done with yet. I got a "*foghorn*This is your captain speaking. You've won a trip to the Bahamas!" call just this morning.

Re:foghorn? (2)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41844217)

My wife gets this daily, somewhere between 3:30pm and 4pm ... "Unknown Caller" all the time, same bullshit recorded message.

As I said when the article about how to stop this ... stop allowing companies to spoof caller ids. The marketers will scream bloody murder, but if you need to put in false information of any sort, that's bordering on fraud.

I'd like to set my phone to say "don't receive calls from anything with a fake caller id, or a blocked caller id".

I've pretty much reached the point that my starting position is hostile to any phone call with an area code I don't recognize, any 800/888/877 number, and anything with Blocked/Unknown caller id.

Re:foghorn? (4, Interesting)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about 2 years ago | (#41844413)

I hacked a quick script together to invoke 'mrnumber' (.com) or equiv service when my modem (yes, real modem on real landline) says the callerid (network CID, actually, so I just connect to a tcp port to get broadcasts of the CID).

the mrnumber crowdsourced website seems to have decent enough go/noGo score so that I can just let the phone ring (let them think there's nothing connected, no person or machine there) or I can answer it if I want.

its getting to be like email, where you want whitelists and anything not in that list gets a 2nd thought if you even want to let them pass-thru to the voicemail/ans mach.

I have no solution for cellphones, but I'm not a big cellphone user anyway, so that solves that, for me. landline abuse is not technically hard to solve if you simply let them 'age you out' due to the line never ever being answered when they call. and if they don't give up, well, you still never get bothered. (my scheme will eventually have a hardware relay that passes thru the 2 phone wires or not, so that your phone chain, below, won't even ring or bother you).

Re:foghorn? (2)

Penguinisto (415985) | about 2 years ago | (#41844253)

I got that a few times on my company cell. Usually about once every couple of months.

If I had the time and inclination, I'd patch through the line, then claim that I'd have to send them a check to pay for it. They give me the address, then I'd try to do unto them what Slashdot once did to that fuckhead Ralsky [] . The USPS could use the boost anyway.

(Speaking of which, I wonder if Ralsky still gets mail... *snicker*)

Re:foghorn? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844337)

Same here. It's nice that they signal me to hang up right away.

Re:foghorn? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844357)

I hope the person who operates that gets cancer and their entire family dies in a house fire.

Re:foghorn? (1)

pwizard2 (920421) | about 2 years ago | (#41844391)

Oh god, I just posted about that one! Use those guys for shark food.

Re:foghorn? (1)

berashith (222128) | about 2 years ago | (#41844393)

I havent listened to that pitch ever. If I meet someone that has lasted past the first annoying blast I will hurt them. This piece of crap call should garner exactly ZERO sales, as it is instantly annoying, and everyone should know to just hang up.

Don't scapegoat Rachel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843889)

How about instead of a fictional character, they go after the real people and companies that profitted from the scam? You know, the credit-card companies and the thieves. Perhaps a big fine and some jail time might solve the problem.

What will happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843897)

So far, FTC has filed suits. The suits will be settled, where the people running these companies will pay a fine of part of their profits and a promise to never do it again. They'll go right back to robocalling, maybe under the same company or under a new company name. Nothing changes when all said and done. Nice and profitable, if you have no soul.

sounds like (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843905)

sounds like the title of some bad porno.

ill leave the meaning of "FTC" in this case up for debate.

Please pierce the corporate veil (5, Informative)

dkleinsc (563838) | about 2 years ago | (#41843907)

Now, assuming we bust all 5 companies and take everything they have, is there any way to go after the owners personally for the frauds they've committed? Or is this going to be yet another instance of the all-too-common business plan:
1. Set up a scam company.
2. Scam people.
3. Government busts the company, forces it into bankruptcy.
4. Personally, you avoided punishment because it's limited liability.
5. Profit!
6. Repeat as many times as you like.

Re:Please pierce the corporate veil (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844005)

Actually one of the reasons the corporate veil can be pierced is that it is just being used as a front for illegal behavior. If you have over a certain number it's actually worse because you are subject to additional charged under RICO.

Re:Please pierce the corporate veil (5, Informative)

JBMcB (73720) | about 2 years ago | (#41844069)

Limited liability only protects you from torts (some private person suing you personally for something your company does.) It doesn't shield you from criminal liability. If your company breaks the law, you are personally responsible, if it was your decision. This is why Bernie Madoff is in jail - his company was defrauding it's investors, but it was his decision to do so.

Re:Please pierce the corporate veil (2)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 2 years ago | (#41844341)

Bernie Madoff is a chump. The pros are too big to punish.

Re:Please pierce the corporate veil (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844091)

I think we should have all the people involved drafted into the Army to defuse landmines. Once one year of service is completed they can leave but if they are involved anything like this again it becomes their permanent career.

Re:Please pierce the corporate veil (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844423)

Anyone involved should be beaten and forced to watch their wife/girlfriend, mother and daughters/sons get sodomized with a large dildo while being strangled and drowned in a bucket full of shit and vomit.

Re:Please pierce the corporate veil (5, Informative)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | about 2 years ago | (#41844215)

Take a look at the 5 cases, they are linked to in the article. I like this one:

Federal Trade Commission, Plaintiff v. ELH Consulting, LLC, also d/b/a Proactive Planning Solutions; Purchase Power Solutions, LLC; Allied Corporate Connection, LLC; Complete Financial Strategies, LLC; 3Point14 Consulting, LLC, also d/b/a Elite Planning Group; Key Tech Software Solutions, LLC, also d/b/a Key One Solutions; Emory L. Holley IV a/k/a Jack Holley, individually and as the sole member of ELH Consulting, LLC; Lisa Miller, individually and as the sole member of Allied Corporate Connection, LLC, Complete Financial Strategies, LLC, and Purchase Power Solutions, LLC; Rares Stelea, individually and as the sole member of 3Point14 Consulting, LLC; and Justin Journay, individually and as the sole member of Key Tech Software Solutions, LLC, Defendants.

Over the 5 cases, in addition to the various corporate entities they name 12 individuals.

Re:Please pierce the corporate veil (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844283)

Fraud abhors a vacuum.

Bankrupt the companies, and the people behind them will set up new ones with different names. Prosecute the owners, and new people will step in to set up new companies. As long as the system allows caller ID spoofing and phone calls by robots, this will continue because the opportunity is there. Take away the opportunity and this will stop.

The caller should have two, and only two, options for displaying their info on caller ID: either they choose to allow their accurate info to be shown or to have it blocked. That way they may choose to be anonymous, but we may also choose to have our phones ignore anonymous callers.

Computers should be banned from placing voice calls. I bought a tailored suit two years ago, and the company needed my phone number to let me know when it was ready. Every two months since then they've robocalled me. I bought a car last year and every three months I get a robocall from the dealership trying to sell me an oil change or another car. Why? Because they think the call doesn't cost them anything -- they don't realize it cost them my business. At least three times a week we get a robocall from some creditor for an employee who hasn't worked there in 6 years, and the system refuses to connect you to a human unless you give it the SSN of the person it's trying to reach... which of course we won't do. If it's not worth a human being's time to make the call, it's not worth a human being's time to take the call. Period.

Hm. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843917)

Thanks FTC for doing your job I guess.

Not too sure why we're making a huge deal out of this, what I want to know is what took you so damn long.

But Why FTC??? (5, Funny)

solardiesel (2685491) | about 2 years ago | (#41843939)

She is the only girl that has called me in the last 3 years...

Forever Alone...

Re:But Why FTC??? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844123)

Parents Mom never calls him - she just shouts down the basement stairs.

Outstanding!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843947)

Incredibly good news!!

Now my phone should finally quiet down after the elections and I can stop spending all my time on the DNC web site filling out complaints.

Re:Outstanding!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844293)

Trooo dat. I haven't received one single solitary call from the lieing fuck Republicans. Probably because they think I'm in the 47%.

But when, and how, did they "pull the plog"? (3, Interesting)

WoodstockJeff (568111) | about 2 years ago | (#41843959)

No information on when they did this, but I got a call from the outfit just two days ago, so they were still operational on Tuesday.

Or, is this like so many other things done at the administrative level nowadays? "We shut them down, by sending a strongly worded letter to the post office box listed somewhere!"

Re:But when, and how, did they "pull the plog"? (5, Informative)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | about 2 years ago | (#41844179)

All 5 cases are linked in the article. As to "when", the cases are dated today, the 1st. As to "how", the cases include things like temporary restraining orders, permanent injunctions, and asset freezes that the FTC is requesting from the court.

Stop the people, not just their companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41843977)

Is there any evidence that the people responsible for doing this can be stopped, not just the companies they started? So often, the companies are shut down, only to have their founders start a copycat company doing the same thing immediately afterwards.

the best thing to do (2)

RobertLTux (260313) | about 2 years ago | (#41844021)

"Mr. Morden: What do YOU want?
Ambassador Vir Cotto: I'd like to live just long enough to be there when they cut off your head and stick it on a pike as a warning to the next ten generations that some favors come with too high a price. I want to look up into your lifeless eyes and wave like this.
Ambassador Vir Cotto: Can you and your associates arrange that for me, Mr. Morden? "

the guys running these Call Centers can be Mr Morden.

Re:the best thing to do (1)

Antipater (2053064) | about 2 years ago | (#41844199)

Really? Because Morden got some pretty badass payback in the end. I'm not sure I want all FTC personnel to wake up tomorrow wearing Keepers.

(I do love that quote though. And that wave.)

Re:the best thing to do (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844481)

As long as we're using Babylon 5 quotes, does

Commander Jeffrey David Sinclair: Everyone lies, Michael. The innocent lie because they don't want to be blamed for something they didn't do and the guilty lie because they don't have any other choice.

remind anyone else of Mitt Romney?

Yes! (5, Informative)

Anon-Admin (443764) | about 2 years ago | (#41844039)

I am so fed up of these calls as well as the collection companies trying to collect on debts from 20 years ago.

I did find a way to get them to pull you from the list.

1) Set up asterisks phone system.
2) Record the three tone sound and message that is played when you call a number than no longer exists.
3) Set the message played to a blocked caller in asterisks to be the recording of the tones with the message that the number no longer exists.
4) Blacklist every one of those F***ERS

When the system detects the tone it will remove your number from the list, Even if they have someone check the number it will play the "Has been disconnected or is no longer in service" message.

It cut my calls down to maybe one a month getting through and I just hit *32 after they get through and add the new number to the black list.

Re:Yes! (3, Interesting)

Jason Levine (196982) | about 2 years ago | (#41844219)

We have something similar with Google Voice. We moved our landline to it ($20 one time fee and another $20 one time fee to keep our old Google Voice number) and have it redirect calls to our cell phones. With Google Voice, you can mark a number as "spam" which means that, if they call again, they'll get a "This number is no longer in service" message.

We've have a series of calls that wind up showing up in Google Voice but not ringing our phones. We were puzzled until we realized that there were probably robocalls from either scammers or politicians. (Cue joke about them being one and the same.) Other people probably marked them as spam so Google decided to mark all instances of calls from those numbers as spam. We can see the number that calls, but we don't get bothered with the actual call.

Re:Yes! (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 2 years ago | (#41844429)

The black list can grow pretty large. Why not make a white list of people who can get through instead and just log the rest?

Re:Yes! (2)

Rob the Bold (788862) | about 2 years ago | (#41844549)

The black list can grow pretty large. Why not make a white list of people who can get through instead and just log the rest?


( X) Whitelists suck


I just got this call... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844073)


Re:I just got this call... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844245)

An outdated, unfunny internet meme.

she owes billions in Do Not Call fines (1)

peter303 (12292) | about 2 years ago | (#41844077)

At least a $100K for my number alone at $1500 a pop.

nothing wrong with your credit... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844093)

When I hear that it's RachelI, I just punch 1, wait for the live operator, tell her I got something on the stove and I'll be back in a minute. That minute never comes.

Please please ... (2)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41844113)

Tell me someone was 'whacked' in the mafia sense of the word? Otherwise it's just a temporary shut down which will be back soon.

Because I get a tremendous amount of calls from these automated things claiming they can lower my interest rates.

This one is most common of these scam calls after the free cruise my wife wins every day at 3pm on her cell phone, and the morons who claim to be from "The Windows Service Provider".

Re:Please please ... (1)

Cro Magnon (467622) | about 2 years ago | (#41844181)

Sorry, but even if someone was truly "whacked", it's only temporary. "Rachel" will be replaced by "Sally", and the scam will continue.

Re:Please please ... (2)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41844295)

Yeah, but the asshats who own the business should be fair game for a little old school hanging or something.

You know, hang the cadavers in cages at the mouth of the harbor with a sign that says "Pirates, Ye be warned" or something.

Unfortunately, the rules which the so-called "legitimate" telemarketers insisted be in place for the do-not call mostly just serve to shield the fraudulent ones.

The downside of google voice (3, Interesting)

StormyWeather (543593) | about 2 years ago | (#41844121)

I have noticed most of these calls come disguised via google voice numbers. They change their numbers nonstop, and the majority of the time when you press one to talk to an operator the system is overloaded and just hangs up on you. I knew they were making crazy money when I saw that. If they can't even handle the amount of traffic the robodialer is generating for them, they are obviously being very successful.

Re:The downside of google voice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844419)

how do you know they are Google numbers? I thought that the scammers had some way to spoof the caller id.

I heard that some guy named Mutt or Matt Romley (or something like that) invested millions in a company that hired thousands of jobs to make the calls in order to help get the US economy running again.

Have you heard about that?

It's a start (1)

Telecommando (513768) | about 2 years ago | (#41844165)

But I'm disappointed they wouldn't implement my suggestion: to make all robo-calls add an option to their menu.

Here's how it would work:

"This is Rachel from Cardholder Services. There is no problem with your account.
Please press "1" to protect your account,
Press "2" to hear about our other exciting offers,
Press "9" to have 10,000 volts applied to the owner of this company's genitals."

9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 ...

I suppose they were right to reject my suggestion, though. The country couldn't afford to repeatedly replace all the "9" buttons on everyone's phones. /only half-joking

Re:It's a start (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844285)

This robocall was already illegal...they're not really into following regulations.

Their customer service was unhelpful (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844211)

I would occasionally allow myself to be passed to a live person, and they were never willing to help out with Diner's Club cards.

Hmmmm -- timing coincidental? (3, Interesting)

Peter Simpson (112887) | about 2 years ago | (#41844263)

The skeptic in me thinks the FTC knew who these companies were all along. Five companies account for millions of unwanted calls a day, and disregard the DNC list? Seems that an operation like that would be hard to hide. Maybe the political pressure got to be too much and FTC felt they had to act? I'm not complaining, just asking why we had to put up with it for several years before there was any regulatory action.
"Round up the usual suspects."

She's NOT gone! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844277)

Rachel has now turned to your electric bill and savings that you can get from the government. This is the new scam that has started just this last week.

One down, hundreds of dirt bags to hunt down and kill.

Now how will people get listed on Google? (1)

retroworks (652802) | about 2 years ago | (#41844281)

I kept putting off the robo call at my business, offering me help to maintain my company website listing on Google. What will I do now?

Next on the chopping block (1)

pwizard2 (920421) | about 2 years ago | (#41844349)

Can they do something about the one where some guy calls you, blasts a loud boat horn in your ear, and then tells you that this is your captain and you have won a free cruise or something like that? After getting a few of those I want to make "captain" walk the plank.

If the geneal public wasn't so dumb... (1)

Vermonter (2683811) | about 2 years ago | (#41844359)

...Then these companies would not make enough profit by scamming people, and it would stop. The fact that this continues for so long, and there are multiple companies doing this, makes me weep for humanity.

In the old days, this never happened... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844371)

In the old days, business was more interested in generating local business and keeping a good name, rather than annoying customers. In the last 10-15 years, something changed, and "We Want More Of Your Money" became the new rule. An annoyed customer who swore never to do business with them again, wasn't much of a customer anyway. Business 'gamed' the telephone system. Its an offshoot of email and the mail system. My uncle once said that people who complained about mass market email were just a bunch of anti-business communists. A few years later, after removing 20 million unsolicited emails from his inbox, his tune changed. Its been changed for the duration. Likewise unsolicited mail, and unsolicited phone calls. 'Gaming the system' is something business has been trying a lot, and doing a lot, and thank God for regulation and legislation that keeps them from taking advantage of public utilities and services to the detriment of all others. Why does it seem like regulation knows no bound? Because on the other side is greed, which really has no bound.

The most annoying thing (4, Interesting)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | about 2 years ago | (#41844387)

The most annoying thing about Cardholder Services is that I know the bank I used to work for actually branded themselves as "Cardmember Services" for customer service, because they had so many cobrands and partners (airlines, hotels, etc - each with their own card branding). Which means that the legitimate bank using that name lent credence to the frauds who followed after.

I raised a concern about it back when they first started doing it (years ago), but was just a lowly programmer who clearly couldn't understand the intricacies and nuances of branding.

When Rachel calls, I waste their time. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41844473)

I work from home. I get 1-3 calls from Rachel per day.
Politely asking to be added to the do not call list does not work.
I hate these jack asses and made it my mission to annoy them back.

If everyone wastes their time, the business model is unprofitable.

Here is what I do... Play along answering questions until they start asking questions to close the deal. When they ask your name, say, "This is Rachel with card services with important news!"

Sometimes they hang up, sometimes they curse you.

The cursing ones are fun to engage.
Had a few nice friendly sales voice turn ghetto.
Good times.....

Not actually associated with my bank (1)

BenJeremy (181303) | about 2 years ago | (#41844535)

Thank god. I talked to one of these idiots a long time ago.... I ask "what bank does this card belong to?" They say "It's your card ending in 9999" I say, that's not what I asked and hang up.

I hope they get the death penalty. Nothing less is warranted - same goes for spammers and virus authors.

Free market solution: Cancel your phone service (1)

cockpitcomp (1575439) | about 2 years ago | (#41844539)

The phone company would quickly find a solution if enough people gave up on their land line and canceled service.
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