Consumer Alert: Blocking ‘robo’ telemarketer calls

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This week’s consumer alert looks at how to avoid those annoying telemarketing robocalls.

It is illegal for telemarketers to call customers without their content. But consumer experts say that many of these robocalls come from overseas and the telemarketers are never held accountable.

Some New Jersey residents told News 12 New Jersey that they have tried to ignore these calls by simply not answering them or blocking the numbers.

“But they shuffle the numbers so often, that’s ineffective,” said one resident.

Experts say that there are some ways to block the calls once and for all.

There are several apps which purport to block the calls. The two best sellers are “NoMorobo” and “Robokiller.” These work by checking incoming calls against a list of known spam phone numbers. Both apps cost $1.99 a month.

The app “Hiya” is free, but it asks for access to a customer’s contacts. Another one, “True Caller,” is also free, but it has advertisements.

AT&T is now offering wireless customers a free roboblocking app. Consumers Union, the group that publishes “Consumer Reports,” is pushing other cell companies to do the same.

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