Seal of the United States Federal Trade Commis...

Image via Wikipedia

Most people are aware of the Do Not Call Registry whereby you can block telemarketers and others from making unsolicited phone calls to your home.  When they wrote this law, Congress saw fit to exempt themselves and their campaign fund raising operations from the law.  As outrageous as that may be, it is not the subject of this article.  To stop the telephone calls go to .

It is a lesser known fact that there is a “do not send” registry whereby you can block some of the junk mail from being sent to your address.  The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) limits the conditions under which consumer reports can be used to make prescreened offers.  You can “OPT OUT” of receiving solicitations from credit card and insurance companies where these conditions are not met.  Solicitors who have used consumer reporting services to determine your creditworthiness, will be precluded from sending offers to you in the mail.  Only certain financial junk mail can be stopped, but any reduction of this stuff is worth the time it takes to make a phone call.

To opt out call 1-888-567-8688 (1-888-5-OPTOUT).  You will be given the choice of opting out permanently or just for 5 years.  Why anyone would choose to allow unwanted solicitations to resume after 5 years is one of those mysteries that come with government programs.  You will be asked to provide your name, address, social security number and date of birth.  You can also opt out online at .  

We have all been advised to use caution before providing our social security number to anyone.  This link will take you to the Federal Trade Commission website to confirm the legitimacy of the Opt Out program

It would be natural to assume this is part of the Obama administration’s new consumer protection legislation because some of its provisions and revisions are only now coming into effect.  However, FCRA was signed into law by President Clinton in 1996.


  1. Ron,
    I understand your fear. The resurgence of interest in Orwell’s book “1984” attests to the fact that you are not alone.

  2. I think this is one of the most vital info for me.
    And i am glad reading your article. But wanna remark on some general
    things, The site style is ideal, the articles is really nice : D.
    Good job, cheers

  3. Thanks for the advice, Bob:

    But….. despite my unbridled admiration for your wisdom, courage, integrity and all-around goodness, I have to disagree with you on this one. Call me paranoid, but I just cannot force myself to email or call a “dot com” and give them my social security number or birth date. So I opt out of doing this.

    That said, I did go to the link,, and when reading their pitch, I did see the following statement buried in one of the paragraphs: “Your Social Security Number and Date of Birth are not required to process your request. However, providing this information will help to ensure that we can successfully process your request.”

    But, alas, I have to stick to my stubborn values that any personal data going to the government is suspect and any going to a dot-com is even scarier.

    I still love your articles and agree with all but one of them now.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s