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  #1  
Old 05-13-2009, 09:26 AM
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I Really HATE These Calls

Tracking Down Auto Warranty Callers

On Sunday, Senator Charles E. Schumer held a news conference to complain about car warranty telemarketing calls.

Mr. Schumer said he had received several of these warranty renewal robo calls — the latest taking place last Wednesday.

“I’ve had enough,” Mr. Schumer said. “These are scam artists.”

Mr. Schumer is not alone. Consumers across the country are flooding Web sites with complaints about these calls and are looking for ways to stop them. Officials in 40 states are investigating the companies behind the calls, and the Better Business Bureau said it received more than 140,000 complaints about the car-warranty calls last year.

Mr. Schumer has asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate and put an end to the calls.

The warranty calls usually begin with an automated voice stating that your vehicle’s warranty has expired or is about to expire. The caller is next prompted to press 1 to speak with a representative or another number to be removed from the list. But consumers say that the calls — which are made to both land lines and cellphones — continue even after they’ve asked to be removed and that adding their names to the Do Not Call Registry hasn’t stopped the calls.

I received a warranty robo call last Thursday from a 989 area code. The automated voice told me that this was my final notice concerning my soon-to-expire auto warranty, which was news to me since I take public transportation and don’t own a car. A search on whocalled.us reveals similar complaints originating from other numbers.

Part of the difficulty in tracking down these companies is that they change their numbers and names often, and they use technology that prevents consumers from calling them back.

One phone number used to call New Yorkers was traced to a disconnected phone in Nebraska that belonged to an illegal immigrant who was arrested in a raid on a meatpacking plant and was deported.

A representative for the Better Business Bureau in St. Louis, where several of these companies are based, said that warranty marketers have been operating for the past five to 10 years. Because the bureau is neither a legal nor a government agency, it said it could not put the companies out of business. The representative suggested that in addition to filing a complaint with the bureau, consumers file one with their state attorney generals’ offices.

The bureau also flagged several Missouri-based companies. Out of all of them, U.S. Fidelis is considered to be among the largest and was the subject of a recent NBC “Today” show investigation. “Today” reported that there are attorneys general in 40 states investigating U.S. Fidelis for deceptive and unfair practices.

The company received an F rating from the Better Business Bureau and — along with Explicit Media — agreed to pay Verizon Wireless $50,000 as part of a settlement over allegations of illegal telemarketing.

William L. Brauch, a special assistant attorney general and director of the consumer protection division in Iowa, told The Times in November that consumers need to be wary of some warranty providers.

“A number of these companies tend to routinely deny paying, they come up with various interpretations, shall we say, of the agreements, which they say justify them not covering whatever the problem might be,” he said.

Verizon Wireless also sued Missouri-based Dealers Warranty (operating under Federal Auto Protection) and National Dealers Warranty, and Netherlands-based Tele Europe for using an auto dialer to reach its customers.

Missouri authorities also filed a lawsuit against U.S. Fidelis last month.

Ken Fields, a U.S. Fidelis spokesman, said in an e-mail message that his company was not making unsolicited phone calls.

“In fact, we applaud Senator Schumer’s request to investigate the manner in which some telemarketing companies are operating within our industry,” Mr. Fields said. “Our company has had to take various forms of legal action not only to stop misconception about who is making these calls, but also to correct negative impressions these calls leave.”


http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/05/12/tracking-down-auto-warranty-callers/?hpw
For once I agree with Chuck.
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  #2  
Old 05-13-2009, 11:15 AM
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I've gotten that call a number of times (Once it was 3 times in a day but the average is once a week)

I laughed the first few times I heard it "Your warrenty is about to expire".....


Haha my warranty expired 12 years ago 150,000 miles back

Last week I had a co-worker in the car with me who also got the call and she actually pushed one even though I told her it was bull and to not bother picking up. Amazingly you do actually talk to one super deppressed telemarketer on the other end....
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:00 PM
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I usually push 1 to talk to them. I then say something naughty like "I'll bet I could ...... you till you.........".
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aklim View Post
I usually push 1 to talk to them. I then say something naughty like "I'll bet I could ...... you till you.........".
And what do you say to the women?
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by al76slc View Post
And what do you say to the women?
Very few men call but I ask them if they would like the lay of the land.
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  #6  
Old 05-13-2009, 12:51 PM
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I wish I could stop them. They are constant.
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  #7  
Old 05-13-2009, 07:59 PM
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I just grabbed a bite to eat at a BK right across the street from US Fidelis...there were hundreds of cars on the lot, presumably belonging to hard-at-work telemarketers. That whole operation is CREEPY...the owner is a convicted felon and thief, who allegedly found Jesus, and runs the operation out of an old outlet mall building that houses the warranty company, and the church that he operates. He donates 10% of profits from the warranty company, to the church, which of course is tax exempt.

His 25,000 sq ft house is the largest in the county, with a cost of $17 million. It makes the "little" 10,000 st ft homes around him look like servants' quarters. If google earth has recent pics of Lake St Louis, the house and construction site should be visible along the east shore of the lake, toward the dam(north) end.
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Old 05-13-2009, 09:18 PM
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1-802-287-9997 was the last one I got today. I'd love to find out where these calls are coming from and throw a molotov cocktail through their window.

Between them and Verizon's lame text messages about crap. When I renew my contract with verizon I'm going to tell them to cut that crap out or I'm going to Sprint.
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  #9  
Old 05-13-2009, 10:33 PM
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Sprint never has sent me a text message, but I have had them call me with offers twice in the past thirteen years that I have been a customer. That was just a few years ago. I told them the first time to not call me with offers. The second time I told them that I had already asked them to not call me, and the salesman took me quite seriously.
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Old 05-13-2009, 10:35 PM
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I'll get an occasional text from verizon. Its certainly not enough to annoy me though. The Warrenty guys have called me from a whole host of numbers from all over the US. The latest one though came in a Restricted (Which I picked up because I thought it was my mom calling me from work)
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  #11  
Old 05-13-2009, 10:43 PM
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Apparently St Louis is the auto-warranty-scam capital of the US. Who knew?
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  #12  
Old 05-13-2009, 10:45 PM
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You pay for the texts and minutes on a cell call, all soliciting calls on cell phones should be illegal.

When I was a RE agent it was none stop.
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