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March 16, 1999

Junk Mail and Telemarketer Fraud

Tips on how to reduce all that mail and protect yourself from scams

Madison, WI (SafetyAlerts) - You know the routine. You sit down to dinner and the phone rings. You answer it. There’s a pleasant voice trying to sell you something. If you’re tempted by the offer, you’d better get the facts before a potential fraud gets you.

While most phone sales pitches are made on behalf of legitimate organizations offering bona fide products and services, many sales calls are frauds.  According to the Wisconsin Consumer Protection Division, consumers lose more than $40 billion a year to telemarketing fraud. That’s why we encourage you to be skeptical when you hear a phone solicitation and to be aware of a new law - the Telemarketing Sales Rule - that can help you protect yourself from abusive and deceptive telemarketers.

Click to learn about telemarketing fraud.

Junk Mail

Experts estimate that Americans receive almost two million tons of junk mail every year, with the average person spending eight full months of his or her life just opening it.

Some of the mail being sent is sexually oriented. To avoid getting sexually oriented mail, fill out Forms 2201 and 2150 at your local post office. The forms must be filled out by the person to whom the mail is addressed. To complete Form 2150, you must include the envelope and entire contents of the sexually oriented mail, sign the front of the envelope, indicate the date it was received, and attach it to the form.

To reduce other types of mail, write directly to the companies that are sending you the junk mail and tell them to stop.

You can eliminate your name from large mailing lists which are sold to direct mail marketers. Your name will usually stay on the removal list for five years; then your name must be registered again.

Write to:

Mail Preference Service
Direct Marketing Association
P.O. Box 9008
Farmingdale, NY 11735-9008

To reduce the number of telemarketing calls made to your telephone, contact:

Telephone Preference Service
Direct Marketing Association
P.O. Box 9014
Farmingdale, N.Y 11735-9014

Both the mail and telephone preference services are operated by the Direct Marketing Association.

Selected Recent Recalls

Health Professional:

Did you know?
During 2000 there were over
1050 products recalled in the United
States for safety reasons!

How many did you hear about?

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