Asbury Park Press
Question: I received an unsolicited fax concerning investment opportunities. I called the 800 number to get my name removed from the database. A machine voice assured me it would be deleted.
Now I receive many more unsolicited faxes offering similar, but different, investment opportunity “newsletters.” I am hesitant to call their 800 numbers because it appears my fax number is being circulated among these solicitors.
How do I get deleted and be sure my response will not again add to the volume of unsolicited faxes? I do not want to continue to incur the cost of paper and ink for their junk mail.
Are there legal restrictions against this, and how do I find out who is sending them?
–W.G., Spring Lake
Answer: You could get a new fax telephone number. But that’s no guarantee the ads won’t come on the new number.
Advertisements faxed without your permission have been illegal for 13 years under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, 47 USC 227. The TCPA provisions are widely violated, according to fax-spam activists such as www.junkfax.org and www.junkbusters.com.
Fax transmissions were included when the Federal Communications Commission last year created a national Do Not Call list, www.donotcall.gov
The FCC rules pertaining to junk faxes were postponed to this January. Marketing-industry lobbyists objected to the limitations.
The House of Representatives recently passed the Junk Fax Prevention Act of 2004, which despite the title would enable marketers to send you faxes without your permission in many circumstances now prohibited by the TCPA. The bill moved to the Senate.
You can file complaints about your unwanted faxes with the FCC and the state attorney general. They can take action for the public if they see a company as especially abusive.
Otherwise, you can sue the company that faxes you for violations of the TCPA – if you are up for finding the company, serving suit and battling to collect on a judgment.
First you have to find the company. Your junk fax included an e-mail address: http://www.poseidis.com.
A domain database says that address is owned by Domainprocessor.com, with subsidiaries UUNET Technologies Inc. and Funpeas Media Ventures, a limited liability corporation.
These companies have been sued before, so a little research should turn up servable addresses.
Another junk-fax activist, the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, has a detailed list of suggestions for taking the offense. Visit www.consumerwatchdog.org/other/junkfaxes. If you don’t have Internet at home, it’s well worth a trip to the library.
Trouble Shooter cannot accept telephone queries. Letters may be sent to Trouble Shooter, Asbury Park Press, 3601 Route 66, Box 1550, Neptune, NJ 07754-1551, fax (732) 643-4014 or [email protected]