How to Stop the Dreaded Barrage of Unwanted Sales Calls

We’ve all been there. The whole family is seated at the table, dinner’s hot, and conversation is flowing.

And then the phone rings. We ignore it. Voicemail picks up. There’s a brief interlude of quiet, and there it is again. Ringing, ringing, ringing.

It seems like once you get on a sales list, the calls never stop. And they’re always inconveniently timed. During dinnertime, family time, quiet time. The truth is, we live in an era where we’re always reachable, always connected and always available. But there’s so much “noise” out there, how can we turn it off?

One of my clients confided that she had finally shut down her home landline because the barrage of sales calls just never seemed to cease. During our one-hour meeting, her cell phone went off time and time again. More sales calls. She was beyond frustrated.

I recommended that she try the National Do Not Call Registry, which I had just recently done myself. It’s extremely simple to do, and it can truly help preserve your sense of privacy. To add your phone number to this protected list, visit donotcall.gov, or call 1-888-382-1222 (make sure to call from the phone number that you are adding to the Registry).

Your phone number should show up on the Registry within about 24 hours. Registering with this service will stop all live sales calls to your phone. You still may receive political calls, charitable calls, debt collection calls, informational calls and telephone surveys, but these types of calls don’t seem to be as frequent or disturbing as the sales calls.

Once you’ve added your number to the Registry, you should be protected. However, if you do receive an illegal sales call, hang up immediately. Do not interact with the call by pressing buttons or asking to speak to a live person. Simply hang up and report the call at donotcall.gov or 1-888-382-1222.

The reason these calls may still get through is simple: technology. Internet-powered phone systems make it cheap and easy for marketers to make robocalls from anywhere in the world, even displaying fake caller IDs, which helps them hide from law enforcement.

The Federal Trade Commission is currently working on developing solutions that will help block robocalls and combat ID spoofing. In the meantime, take the three minutes to register your phone with the Do Not Call Registry and enjoy the silence!