Attorney General Lockyer Urges Californians to Register for National Do Not Call Program

Consumers Who Pre-Registered with AG's Office Do Not Need to Take Further Action

Thursday, June 26, 2003
Contact: (415) 703-5837, agpressoffice@doj.ca.gov

(SACRAMENTO) – California Attorney General Bill Lockyer and Senator Liz Figueroa, D-Fremont, today announced the National Do Not Call Program will be up and running on Friday, providing Californians with protection against unwanted phone calls by telemarketers.

"Since April, more than 2 million phone numbers have pre-registered with my office for this program," Lockyer said. "That more than 1 million Californians have placed their personal and cellular phone numbers on the list shows how tired consumers are of having their privacy invaded by these annoying telemarketers trying to see us unwanted products and services."

Senator Figueroa, author of California's Do Not Call legislation, applauded the FTC, saying, "I'm delighted that California paved the way for a national program that will help stop the home invasion of telemarketing."

Lockyer reminded Californians who already have pre-registered on his website that they do not need to re-register with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Beginning Friday, the Attorney General's Office will forward to the FTC all California phone numbers that have been pre-registered.

The FTC on Friday will announce the website address to register online, as well as the tollfree phone number to register by phone. Californians who visit the Attorney General's website will be routed to the FTC website when the program begins. Registration is free and the numbers will stay on the national list for five years.

The national program begins September 1, when businesses are required to purchase the list and check it every three months. Because companies are given 30 days to scrub their call lists of numbers on the Do Not Call registry, consumers who register by August 31 should see a reduction in unwanted commercial phone calls, starting October 1.

Consumers who continue to receive commercial solicitations in violation of the law are urged to tell the caller they are on the Do Not Call list. If the calls persist, consumers should note the company and the time and date of the calls. Telemarketers who violate the law can face fines of $11,000 per violation in state and federal court, and Californians also will be able to pursue cases on their own in small claims court. For more information, go to the FTC's website at www.ftc.gov.

# # #