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Jun07

Telemarketer Google Scams

Author // Matthew Baylor Categories // Rants

We get roughly 3-4 telemarketer calls a day, most are "robo calls" that these bottom-feeding businesses setup with an auto dialer with the hope of conning small business owners into forking out cash for the perception of getting help that they probably do not need. These businesses try to sell you Google search or business listings through fear-mongering with recorded messages like:

"If you don't press 1 now and talk to a representative Google will remove your business listing."

I get questions from clients constantly asking if their sites and/or listings are OK and if they should be using these services. Fortunately many small businesses hire web services providers like us because building a website and everything associated with running said website is out of their skill set, which is great. But on the flip side they generally aren't tech savvy enough to understand how all of these ancillary services work which these telemarketers feed on.

 

I'm just fed up with the constant calls, wasting my time. So what do you do to combat this plague?

 

donotcall

1. Do Not Call

Register your phone number to be added to the national Do Not Call list. https://donotcall.gov/
Once your number is registered it takes 30 days to be effective. Federal law prohibits telemarketers from calling numbers on that list. There are a few exceptions which you can read about here.

 

hiya app

2. Screen Calls

If you're using a mobile phone there are some apps that can help screen calls. We've been using the Hiya app for iPhone and it has been pretty useful so far. It identifies spam calls and lets you report spam calls which helps keep their database of spammers updated. You can set it to outright block known spam numbers. You can get the app here.

 

end call

3. Got a unwanted call?

If you get a call, hang up. Don't press any buttons or talk to anyone. Just hang up. Many of these recordings mention things like "Press 9 to be removed" which is usually a lie. Once they know they have a working phone number with a live person on the other end they just step up the call attempts.

 

dnc report

4. Report it to Do Not Call.

If you registered your number with the DNC and the 30 day period has passed, go back to the Do Not Call Registry and report it. It won't stop that particular caller from making future calls but it will put them on a list of offenders that could be used against them at some point. I believe the Federal Trade Commission takes action against the most prolific offenders.

 

google report

5. Report it to Google.

Google has a form that you can use to report Robo Callers. They have an interest in protecting their brand and will go after scammers claiming to be from Google. Fill in the form here. Provide as much detail as you can.

 

Google will never robo call you. They do have a few automated call things for account verification but that's a call you would typically be expecting while setting up an account. If they do call you about one of your accounts it will be a real person calling you, not a pre-recorded message. And if you're unsure about a call regarding your businesses internet presence, ask your web developer before you start giving out your billing information.

About the Author

Matthew Baylor

Matthew Baylor

I'm a web designer, focused on sites developed using Joomla! for small and start-up businesses. I strive to create stong bonds with clients to provide world class support. I also managed the Joomla Extensions Directory Team from 2012-2016.

(360) 322-4907