What is Telemarketing?

Telemarketing is the promotion or sale of goods or services by calling potential customers on the phone.

Phone Scams

Telemarketing can be legitimate, but it’s important to be aware of potential scams. Common phone scams involve (but are not limited to) buying and selling timeshares, free trial offers and sweepstakes and prizes.

If you receive a phone call and the caller:

  • asks you to wire money or buy a prepaid card;
  • says you have won a prize or a gift but you need to pay fees or taxes first;
  • asks you to visit websites or download software;
  • asks for usernames, passwords, account numbers, or your home address;
  • says the offer is only good for today; or
  • asks you to keep the call a secret.

Just Hang Up! (PDF)

Tired of Robocalls? (PDF)

Let’s Say Goodbye to Phone Fraud – a Video from the FTC

Register for the National Do Not Call List

You can greatly reduce the number of telemarketing calls you receive by registering for the National Do Not Call List ». Registration is free and works for both landline and cellphone numbers.

Protect yourself or your family members by calling toll-free at 1-888-382-1222 from the phone number you want to register or registering online at ».

Tired of Robocalls?

Report a Violation of the Do Not Call List

If you receive telemarketing calls even though you are registered with the Do Not Call List, please review this handout and Report a Violation of the Do Not Call List ».

Exceptions to the Do Not Call List

Certain telemarketing calls are still allowed under Oregon law, even if you are on the National Do Not Call List. These include calls from:

  • public agencies
  • political campaigns asking for your opinion or vote
  • charitable organizations to which you belong, have previously donated or expressed an interest in supporting
  • companies returning your call, or calling because you asked them to
  • companies you have established a relationship with because you bought products, services or conducted business in the past
  • debt collectors
  • one business to another (business to business calls)

Learn More from the Federal Trade Commission

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