Aug 19, 2013 1:23 PM by MELISSA CANONE
Better Business Bureau of Acadiana is warning residents of the telephone marketing scheme where callers are claiming to be from the state agency in an attempt to lend legitimacy to their telemarketing efforts.
BBB has received several calls from consumers as well as two local insurance agencies on the calls, which are originating from (337) 465-4736, an internet (VOIP) phone number consumers report is originating from New Iberia.
Some consumers have reported the callers claim to be from the "Insurance Placement Center" after claiming affiliation with the Office of Motor Vehicles.
One local insurance agency reported Friday that their customers are also being told that their premium are past due and the callers are requesting financial information.
This scheme is not affiliated with the OMV or the La. Department of Public Safety and Corrections.
The Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles does require residents have vehicles insured before completing many transactions, but does not call anyone to offer assistance with lower insurance rates.
BBB is recommending that consumers receiving this call ask to be removed from their call list and do not provide any personal information such as addresses, alternate phone numbers, banking information or driver's license numbers.
While there is currently no sure way for consumers to stop these calls except for changing telephone numbers, Better Business Bureau recommends:
· Keep your number to yourself. Any time you divulge your telephone number to a retailer, financial institution or other business, it is a tacit invitation for them to call that number or sell it to a third party.
By law, telemarketers must tell you if it's a sales call, the name of the seller, and what they are selling before they make their pitch. It's illegal for telemarketers to misrepresent any information or facts about their goods or services.
· Hang up right away. Recorded marketing (robo) calls typically begin with a second or two of silence. There is nothing to gain from attempting to reason with the people behind the calls.
· Speak with your telephone provider to see if it can provide free blocking services for annoying telemarketing calls. Unfortunately, the telephone number displayed on caller ID may not always be legitimate.
· If the call is a recording, do not press 1 or any other numerals to "get yourself off the list." By pressing a number, you are confirming that someone is actually responding to the call and you will likely receive more of them.
· Consider registering your home and cell phone numbers with the National Do Not Call Registry. The web address is www.donotcall.gov and the phone number is (888)-382-1222.
· Start with Trust®. Check with the BBB before doing business.
The BBB of Acadiana works for a trustworthy marketplace by maintaining standards for truthful advertising, investigating and exposing fraud against consumers and businesses.
The BBB of Acadiana services the parishes of Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Martin, St. Landry and Vermilion.