Vehicle Warranty Solicitations A Telemarketer Trap

VehiclesCell PhonesMarketingJason Moore

SACRAMENTO - Thousands of Californians are getting unwelcomed phone solicitations for updating their vehicle warranties, even though many of those calls are illegal.

The automated call begins by saying "this is the second notice that your vehicle warranty is expired."

But many of the calls are going to cell phones and people on the Federal 'do not call' list.

Stephanie Books says it's "...very annoying, it's probably about three times a week."

Abel Gomez added, " happens like constantly and you really can't trace the call."

The call back numbers are either blocked, or spoofed...linked to disconnected numbers.

Even the Sacrament Better Business Bureau has gotten the calls. The staff went through the phone menu on the recorded calls to get a live person, who then tried to sell them a used vehicle warranty.

The BBB is recommending those who receive the calls to hang up. BBB CEO Barry Goggin says at best, you'll get an overpriced warranty that you don't need, and "...worst, they don't exist except to take your money."

Attorney generals in at least a half dozen states have traced calls to fly-by-night operations that don't intend to service the warranties they sell. Many are located in Missouri, but they also operate in New Jersey, Texas, and California. Some have been shut down or fined. But the vast majority remain operating because they can't be found.

Unsolicited telemarketers are not allowed to call cell phone numbers, but that hasn't stopped the automated onslaught which is made possible by automated calling programs.

Jason Moore got calls on his business and personal cell phones. He says the calls stopped after he put his numbers on the "do not call" list. But many other callers still get them, no matter what they do.

You can report telemarketer complaints to the Federal Trade Commission by calling 888-381-1222.

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