Telemarketing Software Featured Article

New Law Prevents Spoofing by Telemarketers

March 22, 2010
By Susan J. Campbell - Telemarketing Software Contributing Editor

For consumers trying to get dinner on the table, there is nothing more annoying than answering the phone to find a pushy telemarketer using a telemarketing software on the other end. The exasperation is compounded by the fact that the consumer believed it to be someone else on the line as their Caller ID indicated it could be a friendly call.

This “spoofing” or disguising of telemarketing numbers has helped to get a many number of calls answered. The problem is the consumer ends up feeling duped and the company making the call starts to develop a reputation that is less than stellar.

The Associated Press (News - Alert) reported last week that Mississippi Governor, Haley Barbour signed a new bill that prevents telemarketers from using techniques to disguise their numbers. Public Service Commission Chairman Brandon Presley has praised this move.

The bill, which takes effect July 1, makes it illegal to use a technique known as “spoofing” that puts a different number and/or name on a Caller ID than that of the actual caller. This is a tactic that is viewed by many as deceitful and one that should have been outlawed already.

According to Presley, a person’s Caller ID may show a call from a “660-555-1654” when the call was actually coming from a “618-555-0987” number. He noted that as many as 200 complaints of No-Call violations to the PSC are believed to be the result of spoofing. Now that the law, known as House Bill 872, is in place, violators will be charged with misdemeanors.

While this new law is certainly a win for the consumer, some telemarketers may need to find another way to drive revenue. While using “underhanded” tactics is not condoned by every telemarketing company in the industry, it was an effective technique for many and one that will dry up a source of revenue when the bill comes into effect in July. 

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Kelly McGuire