Recently, a major political robocall company said (in response to their FCC citation for violating cell phone calling prohibitions), “We are simply a service provider. We inform our customers about the (political cell phone) laws, but we cannot possibly police all of them.” Not surprisingly, that didn’t go over well. As the 2016 political calling season nears, let's take a fresh look.
How to Scrub Cell Phone Numbers - Click Video
This video is for informational purposes. Be sure to consult your own attorney for questions specific to your business.
As you may know, on Sept. 11, 2012, the FCC issued a Political Call Enforcement Advisory saying, “…This broad prohibition covers prerecorded and voice auto dialer political calls, including those sent by nonprofit organizations…” In March of 2013, the FCC issued a citation to two of the major political robocall companies, one Democratic and one Republican, saying these major players were in violation of the Enforcement Advisory.
Because the penalties for these calls is $16,000 each, these political callers face millions of dollars in fines
based on the Commissions estimate of the number of calls made in a three-month sample period.
The advisory goes on, “…prerecorded voice messages and autodialer calls (including auto dialer live calls) to cellphones and other mobile devices are prohibited unless they are for emergency purposes or are made with the prior express consent of the person being called.”
That’s pretty clear language. You’ll need to “scrub” your cell phone numbers before making political calls this time around. A whole industry relying on seasonal business every year or two is affected of course. And you may have noticed, you’re getting fewer political calls this year. I got one from a local campaign here in West Palm Beach and called them back with a message letting them know it wasn’t a good idea. The calls stopped.
So here’s the thing. Don’t try and scrub cell numbers in-house.
People are converting their landline numbers to mobile numbers every day. Twenty percent of consumers and businesses change their number every year. You don’t want to be get caught up in that, having to justify your cell scrubbing procedures—especially when you don’t even need to register with the National Do Not Call Registry to scrub cells, saving you $17,000 per year!
Consider a top Do Not Call Law Compliance Service Provider for your cell scrubbing chores. It’s inexpensive, and when push comes to shove with federal and state agencies, the information will be archived, dated and available in the timeframe and format the FCC, FTC, state attorneys general, or courts want it.
Don’t ask your list provider, fulfillment department, data provider or other close relationship partner to help you out here. They don’t really want to, anyway. Traditionally, they’ve just handled some Do Not Call chores to keep you happy. But the stakes are too high now - with the CFPB re-interpreting the TCPA as they like – and class action suits hitting the courts on this.
Yes, I know the political calling arena is a VERY specialized and closed game.
Based on price, service, and reputation, you’ve traditionally handled all the calling bells, whistles, and secret sauce in-house, including compliance. But cell phone scrubbing…You want to stay as far away from this one as you can.
YOU don’t want to claim you scrubbed anything. You want to claim, “The top Do Not Call Law Compliance Service Provider in the country scrubs our cells in real time before each campaign. They certify, archive, date, and format the material should it be needed for authentication by state and federal authorities…” Any more questions Mr. State Attorney General?
Now you’re talkin’ protection!
For more information on certified DNC Cell Phone Scrubbing for Political Calls call Bob at 561-317-3001.