ATA Condemns Auto Warranty Telemarketing Scams

Pending formal action from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the American Teleservices Association (ATA) is speaking out against companies believed to be behind a national wave of spam “robocalls” warning people that their auto warranties are about to expire and stating that they need to sign up for a new service plan. The ATA, a non-profit professional trade association representing the contact center industry, condemns such practices and strongly supports the removal of such fraud.   Association and industry leaders are calling on their contacts in Washington, as well as various State Attorneys General, to quickly focus on anti-fraud enforcement.

The ATA is suggesting that congressional hearings be conducted to address legislative action against these illegal calls that are affecting thousands of consumers nationwide. Today, the ATA also contacted representatives at the FTC and pledged its continued support of their efforts to protect consumer rights and legitimate use of the phone to conduct business.

“The American Teleservices Association and its members stand beside the federal government and its agencies in the fight against fraud,” said Tim Searcy, CEO of the ATA.  “It is illegal for firms or individuals to use a legitimate channel of customer communication like the telephone to perpetrate criminal acts such as the auto warranty fraud currently being committed.  It is for this very reason that the ATA has established consumer guidelines to assist the public in assessing whether a call is legitimate or fraudulent.”

Consumer complaints regarding car warranty scams are believed to number over 10,000 with the FTC, over 140,000 to local Better Business Bureaus, and a national total is estimated to exceed 300,000 reports, as stated in a news conference announcement on Tuesday from Senators Charles Schumer (NY-D) and Mark Warner (VA-D).  The FTC has inquiries under way into several companies involved in the deceptive calls and is also providing an electronic link on its homepage for consumers to file complaints.

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