In the last few months I've heard from Colorado Springs residents who were upset and alarmed by telephone calls from collection agencies. They knew they weren't on the hook for anything, despite curt messages to the contrary. They thought the calls were crooks perpetrating a scam.
But we learned differently.
In two of the cases the collection agency was purposely given the wrong number by a person who owed a big debt. For example, Judy's cell number was given to the agency... saying that was the way to reach the debtor... when in fact, Judy doesn't know anything about the debt or the debtor.
In a third case, an agency was trying to reach Jim.. because he owed money and once lived with his sister, Nancy. Now Nancy's phone number is getting calls... and she thought the calls were ones for her... when, in fact, they're really for Jim. Nancy isn't on the hook for her brother... but the reason she's being bothered is because the collection agency only has one number for Jim... and it just happens to be her home number.
What doesn't help is that some of the calls made by collection agencies are so cryptic... that the caller is immediately suspicious. For example... I've heard messages demanding that you call back and leave an account number... an account number for what? And calls demanding that payment of $15,000 be made today.... again... for what?
You have certain rights when it comes to the collection of debt. If you have any questions, visit the Federal Trade Commission's website.
It's smart to be overly protective when it comes to protecting your identity. Don't be too willing to share information unless it's warranted.
If you get a suspicious call, let me know. I'll check it out.
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