Telemarketers are tricking unsuspecting people into letting them call to pitch their products, state Consumer Advocate Eric Witkoski said Tuesday.
Witkoski reminded residents that the initial 5-year period covering those enrolled in the National Do Not Call Registry ends next June. Consumers should consider calling the Do Not Call toll-free number, 1-888-382-1222, to renew their registrations, he said.
Congress may make the registrations permanent, according to Witkoski, but residents should renew soon so there is no lapse.
Telemarketers are trying to skirt the Do Not Call registry by sending mail promising free consumer information, products and services if consumers sign and return a card, he said. The cards also authorize companies to telephone and solicit them to purchase other products.
Senior citizens are being frightened into responding to this mail, according to Witkoski. They receive mail that appears to have been sent by a government source that suggests they have their medical, retirement or probate plans reviewed by experts.
Once they return the cards, the senior citizens begin to receive telephone pitches from companies selling investments, insurance and other financial products.