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Cell Phone Numbers Are Going Public in a National Directory-Fiction!

Cell Phone Numbers Are Going Public in a National Directory-Fiction!

Summary of eRumor: 

Cell phone numbers are going public and will be included in a national directory that telemarketing companies will be able to access.

The Truth: 

There’s no truth to claims that cell phone numbers are going public.

Chain emails have warned for years that cell phone numbers are “going public” and will be included in a national cell phone directory that telemarketers will be able to access. The emails encourage people to “opt out” from having their cell phone numbers included in the directory.

The truth is that it’s illegal for most telemarketers to call cell phone numbers, even if the number is not listed on the do-not-call registry, the FCC says:

“Even if a wireless 411 directory is established, most telemarketing calls to wireless phones would still be illegal. For example, it is unlawful for any person to make any call (other than a call made for emergency purposes or made with express prior consent) using any automatic telephone dialing system or any artificial or prerecorded voice message to wireless numbers. This law applies regardless of whether the number is listed on the national Do-Not-Call list.”

These chain emails mislead people in a number of ways. First, there is no separate do-not-call list for cell phone numbers. Second, there is no deadline to register a number. Third, Any phone number that is added to the list will stay there until it is disconnected, so it doesn’t have to be renewed every five years, the FCC says.

Cell phone numbers can be added to the do-not-call list to prevent telemarketers that are exempt from the rules from calling them by clicking here.

The eRumor’s claim that a national directory of cell phone numbers will be made public is also false. Many states have laws that require cell phone companies to get permission before releasing a customer’s cell phone number. That means many people would have to “opt-in” to a national cell phone number directory if one was being created.