A Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) report recently submitted to Congress on the use of the Do Not Call Registry (the “Registry”) by businesses and consumers highlights the dangers in misuse of telemarketing leads. According to the FTC, “marketers claiming a business relationship have improperly placed telemarketing calls to consumers after acquiring the consumers’ telephone numbers from others.” Only in certain circumstances would calls by third- party marketers be permitted to telephone numbers on the Registry after acquiring the number from a lead generator.
Under the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule (“TSR”) National Do Not Call provisions a company may call a consumer with whom it has an “established business relationship” even if the consumer's number is on the Registry. However, according to the FTC, “telephone calls from telemarketers to phone numbers provided by lead generators generally do not fall within the established business relationship exception because, while the consumers may have a relationship with the lead generator, they do not have an established business relationship with the seller who has purchased the leads.”
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