RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Robocalls are among the most annoying problems in modern life. However, there may be a way to make a buck on the scammers by making them pay for annoying you.
Security experts estimate that half the calls people get are robocalls from telemarketers or scammers. More than 26 billion were logged last year.
“They’re unbelievably annoying,’’ said Frank Cassidy.
Kaitlin Marks said there seems to be no way to shut them down. She said she gets them every day.
An app called Do Not Pay now promises to turn the tables on the robocallers with its “Robocall Revenge.”
“It gets you cash compensation every time a robocall calls you up,’’ said inventor Joshua Browder. “That’s up to $3,000 per call.”
The app starts by making sure the user is on the “do not call” registry. Broder said that makes it a federal civil crime to call a person. Once a caller violates that, they’re open to being sued.
“How would I do that?” asked Frank Cassidy. “I don’t have the money to sue people.”
The app does the suing.
“When they call you, the app will make a log of the call and it generates all the paperwork so you can sue them under something called the Telephone Consumer Protection Act,” Browder said.
Do Not Pay also generates a fake credit card number that can be given to the robocaller — even if they’re using a spoofed number.
“When they try and run the card through the payment network, we get their phone, address, and name,” Browder said.
“That is something I’d look into if steps were taken for me,” Marks added.
That’s not the only way to make money on robocallers. A $47 kit created by a Texas man gives step-by-step instructions on how to sue the robocalls. The guide was the brainchild of Doc Compton.
“They look at it as the cost of doing business,” he said. “And if they pay a $1,500 for some of these calls, oh well.”
There’s also no limit to the number of times a telemarketer can be sued.
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