Got a call on your mobile phone about the upcoming “Velveteen Rabbit” movie? You’re not alone: Verizon (VZ) is suing a Utah-based telemarketing company for auto-dialling Verizon Wireless customers almost 500,000 times over 10 days earlier this month. The telemarkers were representing Family 1 Films, a LA-based film production and distribution company.
Verizon: Many of these calls came in rapid succession, indicating the use of an autodialer to place the calls. For example, between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. on Feb. 13, nearly 11,000 calls with the same caller ID were made, an average of one call every 0.32 seconds, and nearly 10,000 calls were made from a number with the same caller ID between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. on Feb. 6, an average of one call every 0.36 seconds.
The lawsuit alleges violations of the Federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act, which makes it illegal to use an autodialer to make calls to wireless phones, as well as state fraud and privacy laws. Verizon Wireless has also filed a motion seeking a preliminary injunction to stop the defendants from making these calls.
Verizon has about 80 million wireless subscribers, so only a small percentage were affected. But Verizon has been one of the more aggressive carriers when it comes to suing spammers.
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