Telemarketing Software Featured Article
Telemarketing Software: A Case of Good vs. Evil
By Jamie Epstein, TMCnet Web Editor
Earlier this month, the Federal Trade Commission revealed that it filed complaints against 14 corporate defendants and 17 individual defendants in six different lawsuits in which the organization’s suits ultimately led a federal judge to not only freeze businesses' assets, but tell the alleged criminals to halt their actions. What exactly are they being accused of you ask? Using telemarketing software to contact the masses with promises of free tech support.
"The FTC has been aggressive--and successful--in its pursuit of tech support scams," according to FTC chairman Jon Leibowitz (News - Alert), reported first by InformationWeek Security. "The tech support scam artists we are talking about today have taken scareware to a whole other level of virtual mayhem."
In essence what was happening is that countless English-speaking consumers located in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom, were contacted by fake technical support operations and then forced to shell out upwards of fees ranging from $49 to $450 for services they never even received.
"When consumers agreed to pay the fee for fixing the 'problems,' the telemarketers directed them to a website to enter a code or download a software program that allowed the scammers remote access to the consumers' computers," the FTC (News - Alert) added. "Once the telemarketers took control of the consumers' computers, they 'removed' the non-existent malware and downloaded otherwise free programs."
These cases were brought against the defendants for going against both the FTC Act, which bars individuals and companies alike from powering unfair commerce, in addition to the Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act, which makes it illegal to conduct deceptive telemarketing.
Although the above scenario depicts how telemarketing software can be leveraged for evil rather than good, this solution is actually very vital to organizations. This couldn’t be truer than in the recent situation seen where LifeBoat teamed with telemarketing software provider VanillaSoft.
VanillaSoft works with customers around the world and in nearly every industry, powering Software-as-a –Service offerings that have been created from the ground up to make selling, prospecting or appointment setting through outbound calling much less complex and more fruitful. It offers users robust capabilities including automatic lead distribution, logical branch scripting, auto dialing, next-best-lead routing, intelligent call recording, integrated e-mail follow-up, real-time activity dashboards and Web reporting.
Kevin Thornton, executive vice president of Sales and Marketing, VanillaSoft commented, “There were a number of factors that influenced this decision. Lifeboat is very reputable and is highly regarded as a great partner that is easy to do business with. The company has a global reach and is an international company with a U.S. head office and regional sales offices abroad. Also, Lifeboat is a specialty software distributor and as such is very focused on the software category.”
While VanillaSoft has historically focused on direct sales and marketing strategies through this newly inked partnership with Lifeboat, it will be able to leverage the firm’s sales and marketing programs and their base of global resellers, augmenting the telemarketing software provider’s direct efforts with a comprehensive two-tier channel program.
Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli