DoNotPay launches Robo Revenge to help consumers sue robocallers

The fight against robocalls is real. We have documented the government’s efforts to curtail these annoying telephone spammers many times in recent months. Laws have been strengthened, and the FCC and FTC have been given broader authority to institute higher fines against companies that spam out tens of billions of calls through automated systems.

Now DoNotPay is getting involved. DoNotPay describes itself as the “world’s first robot lawyer.” Its app allows people to do anything from fighting traffic tickets to offering advice on licensing agreements.

On Thursday, the startup launched a new service called Robo Revenge that allows users to go after robocallers. DoNotPay will gather the info on unwanted automated calls and help consumers sue the infringing companies for up to $3,000. The service is available through the DoNotPay app or its website. Vice notes that the process is relatively straightforward.

Robo Revenge will first put your number on the Do Not Call Registry to be sure that any unsolicited robocalls you receive become a violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). After that, whenever you receive a call, you will give the caller credit card details generated by DoNotPay. These are the same virtual credit cards the company hands out to users to sign up for free trials.

The app will use the credit card transaction to collect details on the company spamming your number. It will then use this info to generate demand letters and file court proceedings automatically on your behalf.

The service intends to disincentivize companies from autocalling consumers by hitting them in the pocketbook.

“All of the big companies like AT&T and Apple have failed to protect consumers,” said DoNotPay’s Founder and CEO Joshua Browder. “The only way the problem will end is if the robocallers start losing money every time they call someone.”

The service comes with one fairly significant caveat — it only works for US-based companies.

“You can’t sue [overseas firms] because you don’t even know where they are,” said Browder.

This is too bad since so many of these scammers operate out of other countries. Even were you to identify the offending company, getting them to pay up on a default judgment is probably a lost cause.

Of course, for the program to work, you still have to deal with the phone scammers — listening to their spiels and giving them DoNotPay’s auto-generated credit card info. Yet, for the possibility of a $3,000 settlement, it’s not a bad prospect.

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cliffordcooley

TS Redneck
I live in the states and only travel among three of them. I have no desire to communicate by phone internationally. It would be nice, if I could black list all international calls.
 
I work for a law firm, but I'm going to try this app out. It asks for a $3 contribution per month. Take that into account.
Yes. It is also worth mentioning that the $3 subscription does not start until you use one of DoNotPay's services. Also, if the $3 fee does not go through (ie you're broke or have reached your credit limit), DoNotPay will not charge you for the service at all. It does not mention this in its FAQs but does state this after you enter your payment information.

You may also notice a $0.50 charge on your bank or CC statement, but this is just an authorization charge to verify the account is valid. It is not actually taken from your account.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that I can personally verify that what they say is true about charging. I first signed up to DoNotPay back in November with the last story I did on it. So far I have not used any of the services and have not been charged.
 
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Ravey

TS Addict
With an app though you are still receiving the call. I want to internationally disconnect my number completely.
There is also the alternative where you can set your phone to only accept numbers already in your contacts list. Any No Caller ID's or random numbers will not ring your phone (Again though, they will still be able to leave Voicemail). This combined with blocking unknown numbers seems to have worked quite well for me
 
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jpuroila

TS Booster
There is also the alternative where you can set your phone to only accept numbers already in your contacts list. Any No Caller ID's or random numbers will not ring your phone (Again though, they will still be able to leave Voicemail). This combined with blocking unknown numbers seems to have worked quite well for me
This "alternative" seems to come up a lot in discussions like this, completely ignoring the fact that for most people it's not an option. People do get legitimate calls from unknown numbers from time to time. Important calls, even.
 

BigRedPDX

TS Booster
The problem with robocalls, except how annoying they really are, is that if you get your number changed and a company sends out a robocall to that old number. A lot of times your personal information and amount owed will be said right out loud to whomever picks up that robocall from your recycled phone number. That's a class action lawsuit in itself, and I've had a few of those come through my email already. We're in a sate of privacy security transition right now, and everyone is slowly becoming aware of it.
 

Rayzor

TS Rookie
I've read recently about the US companies that connect the international scammers to the US phone system, this could be another layer that DoNotPay could hit with law suits.
 

Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
Settlements could be worth up to $3,000 if the company happens to be based in the US

And how long does it take to move an operation off shore? Faster than you can read this!