As most small businesses are aware - false advertising billers are numerous these days. I only cottoned on to these organisations (and I use the term very loosely) - a few months back when I was receiving a call every day about such and such guide that I had apprently agreed to advertise in months ago. These calls started after I placed an ad in the local news paper. Obviously these scum like creatures check the paper for legitimate businesses to target.
I thought they had stopped but today I was delighted to receive another phone call from a woman called 'Tony' from a private number regarding the Children's 'Support Guide. She was ringing with regard to the 2011 guide to see if I wanted to advertise with. I then told her I wasn't interested. She then responded with a 'I'm confused sorry'....I explained that I wasn't interested again. She then told me that she could take me off the 2011 list but I had already agreed to the 2010 print and it had already gone to publishers. I laughed and told her that I hadn't agreed to that either and she informed me she would contact her supervisor to see what I had said. I told her that she was welcome to do so. I soooooo want her to call me back.
For those of you who aren't aware of these people. They generally ring about an ad that you agreed to months prior. Obviously this isn't the case and you never did. They are betting on that you become confused and make you think as though you have forgotten something and as you don't want debt associated with your business you generally pay up. Apparently some of them even send you a 'copy' of the guide or journal with an 'invoice' to pay. Do not be tricked - this is not proof of distribution and usually yours is the only copy that has ever been printed. Generally they are asking for payments of around $425 dollars. That seems to be their standard amount. They also have names that are very familiar. Emergency Services Guide, Child Support Guide, SES Guide, the list goes on and on. They also at times record you and try to get you to say the YES word so they can attempt to use that next time they call to solicit you into payment! It is by the way illegal to record you without your knowledge so you can hit them with that as well if they try it on you.
Basically if you've not signed anything - don't pay it. If you havn't initiated it - don't agree to it. Once you agree to one you seem to get a 'we've got a live one here' and you will get endless harassing phone calls.
I've even been sworn at by one of these people when I told them I knew what they were trying to do. The next time one calls I am going to ask for their phone number so that the ACCC or the police can ring them back on my behalf. I also make a habit of reporting them to the ACCC along with their phone number (if its not private as they usually are) with the name of the so called journal and any other information I have.
It just makes me grin and think of the Karma factor. This blog is in the hope that it stops someone from being a victim. Word to the wise people. What losers.