In its battle to rein the coordinated system facilitating illegal robocalls, the Federal Trade Commission announced a proposed order against a lead generator, which the agency charged with deceptively collecting consumers’ information and then selling their data to telemarketers…leading to harassing calls.
The announced proposed order would ban California-based Response Tree LLC and its president from making robocalls or helping others with those calls.
The FTC said that the lead generator ran scores of websites to trick consumers looking for information on mortgage refinancing loans and other services. The agency alleged that the lead generator would use “deceptive and manipulative “dark patterns” on the sites to induce consumers to provide their personal information.” Consumers’ information would be sold to telemarketers which then pelted consumers with calls. The FTC called this system of lead generating websites, “consent farms.”
In addition to being banned from making or facilitating robocalls under the proposed order yet to be approved by a court, the lead generator and president could be on the hook for a $7 million judgment, currently suspended because of the defendants’ inability to pay.