The LAT tells us the obvious, namely phone scammers are ignoring the do not call registry:
Regardless of having registered a phone line with the Federal Trade Commission as a telemarketer-free zone, a growing number of consumers are saying that some businesses are ignoring their stated preference and calling anyway.
A particular annoyance: automated robocalls that get you on the line before looping in a human telemarketer. Such calls frequently use "spoofed" lines that hide their origin or make it look as if the call is from someone you know.
"I've given up answering the land line," said Rory Johnston, 67, of Hollywood. "They're nearly all robocalls."
It's not people's imagination that telemarketers are stepping up their game.
"We're definitely seeing an uptick in consumer complaints," acknowledged Lois Greisman, associate director of the FTC's division of marketing practices, which oversees enforcement of the do-not-call list.
Here at PB.com, we get about 5-10 calls a week from some outfit that calls itself various versions of the Home Improvemt Center. (It seems I'm not alone.)
It's an obvious scam, as they claim to have done work for us in the past, which is a bald faced lie (how dumb do they think we are). I assume they want to set us up for some sort of robbery (or maybe just fraudulent home repairs). As the LAT observes, the phone companies charge you an arm and a leg (well, a couple of toes, anyway) for "solutions" that don't work:
In California, Verizon charges $2.50 a month to block calls from anonymous numbers, although this won't stop spoofed numbers. The company also charges $4 a month to block calls from up to a dozen local numbers, but this will still allow "800" numbers to get through.
AT&T charges $7.50 a month for each of the same services, though the company says some customers may have them included in their calling plans.
If it doesn't stop 800 numbers or spoofed numbers, what good is it?
So I've tried being polite, hanging up, yelling, and nothing works. Now I want a way to hit back. Maybe some sort of computer virus that one could send back down the phone lines or something. Where's a public spirited hacker when you need one?