FCC considering allowing telemarketers to call/text your cell phone

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Judy Keller can't stand unwanted or harassing phone calls.

She said, “They call all the time, sometimes as early as eight in the morning, sometimes late at night.”

Those are just the calls she receives on her land line.

Now her cell phone could be under fire.

Michael Figgins is executive director of Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma.

He said, “Kiss your privacy goodbye because it's going to be ringing a lot more than it used to.”

Figgins says it is against the law for a telemarketer or business to call you on your cell phone without getting your permission first.

“Currently if they call you and it's a wrong number, they're liable,” he said.

That could change if some business and industry trade groups have their way.

The Federal Communications Commission is considering allowing businesses, including telemarketers and debt collectors, to call or text your cell phone as long as they say they called a wrong number.

“You have to consider who's on the other end, large moneyed interest [groups], who are currently being found liable for making the kind of calls that no one wants to get,” Figgins said. “They're looking for a way to be able to make those calls without being found liable and to disturb your privacy as well as mine.”

Consumer groups nationwide, including Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma are demanding the FCC keep the law as is.

Figgins says without it his agency can't file lawsuits and collect penalties from companies that harass their clients with robocalls or text messages.

“You can say, ‘But I'm on the Do Not Call Registry and they'll say, ‘Sorry, it was a wrong number. It was our mistake,’” Figgins said. “They can use that excuse forever.”

Judy says she can't take much more of the nuisance calls.

She said, “I do not need this kind of distraction.

Figgins and Legal Aid Services are urging consumers to voice their concerns to the FCC and local elected officials.

Here are some free apps out that help you block spam calls and emails.

 Click here to file a complaint with the FCC.

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