Federal rules prohibit fax spam
Somebody has been spamming our fax number for months. We changed our phone number, but they got our new number soon after. I believe the caller is from the East Coast, because they've called between 3 and 5 a.m., Saturday or Sunday. My husband's office is in our bedroom, therefore, waking up in the middle of the night is getting more annoying every day. I have called their "unsubscribe" number with no result. Do you know what my rights are in Hawaii and if there is a way to stop them?
Answer: Federal laws cover the sending of unsolicited faxes.
"Given the nature of federal law, it did not appear necessary to enact state legislation to cover this area," explained Stephen Levins, executive director of the Office of Consumer Protection.
However, you can file a complaint with OCP. Call 587-3222 or check the Web site www.hawaii.gov/dcca/areas/ocp/main/contact.
"If the faxer is emanating from a mainland jurisdiction, we will coordinate our efforts with that particular state's enforcement authority," Levins said.
On July 9, 2005, Congress enacted the Junk Fax Prevention Act, which amended previous restrictions on the sending of faxes.
Previously, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 and Federal Communications Commission rules had prohibited sending unsolicited advertisements to a fax machine "without the recipient's prior express permission or unless the sender has an established business relationship with the recipient."
It didn't matter if the fax machine was at a business or home.
The Junk Fax Prevention Act amended the TCPA by allowing unsolicited ads to be sent to consumers and businesses with whom the sender has an established business relationship.
It requires senders of fax advertisements to include a notice and contact information on the first page of the fax, with information on how to "opt out" of any future fax ads from the sender.
FCC rules also require the sender of the fax to provide identification in the top or bottom margin of each page or on the first page of the fax message. A telephone number, date and time the fax was sent should be noted.
For more information, check the Web site www.fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/unwantedfaxes.html.
To a quick-thinking FedEx driver and to Dale at the McCully Longs Drug store for saving our staff holiday lunch on Dec. 13. We had lost a case with four large trays of food when it went sliding onto the street after our truck hit a pothole. Luckily, the FedEx driver found the case and delivered it to Longs, where Dale went to the trouble of calling all the nearby caterers to see if a customer had lost mochiko chicken, noodles, teri beef and barbecue. Thanks to their honesty and thoughtfulness, we were able to enjoy our holiday lunch. We hope the season brought them much joy.
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