(Fwd) (Fwd) ULS-Report: Reduce Junk Mail

Scott Mouw (Scott_Mouw@picard.p2pays.org)
Fri, 22 Jan 1999 17:04:16 -0500

------ Forwarded Message Follows -------

Nov. 3, 1997

Contact: Tom Watson, NWPC coordinator
(206) 296-4481


Are you tired of receiving "pre-approved" credit offers? Some consumers
receive dozens of these offers every year, even though they may have no
interest in them. This type of unwanted mail -- also known as "junk
mail" -- can now be stopped!

Changes to the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act took effect Sept. 30,
1997. Under one provision of the new law, consumers can call a
toll-free number to have their names removed from mailing lists used for
credit offers. The toll-free numbers are operated by the three major
national credit bureaus. Consumers only need to call ONE of these
numbers; the credit bureaus share the lists with each other. The
numbers are:
Equifax 1-800-556-4711
Experian (formerly TRW) 1-800-353-0809
Trans Union 1-800-680-7293

Under the law, the pre-approved credit card offers themselves must now
include these toll-free phone numbers. Consumers should begin to see
the numbers on the offers within the next few months.

Martin Abrams, vice president for information policy and privacy for
Experian, says that virtually all companies offering pre-approved credit
cards use lists from the three major credit bureaus. Calling one of the
toll-free numbers "will, over time, reduce mail," Abrams says. The
Federal Trade Commission (FTC) says that calling one of these numbers
will reduce unsolicited insurance offers as well, since insurance
companies also use credit bureau lists.

When consumers call one of the toll-free numbers, they can have their
names removed from these credit bureau lists for two years. If they
request, they will be sent a form that will allow them to have their
names taken off these lists permanently.

The National Waste Prevention Coalition is made up of people in the
solid waste management field. The Coalition's members work for local
governments, state governments, non-profit organizations, universities,
consultants and businesses. One of the Coalition's major projects is
the National Junk Mail Reduction Project. For more information on the
Coalition, see its Internet website at:

For more information on the Fair Credit Reporting Act, see the FTC
website at: http://www.ftc.gov/os/statutes/fcrajump.htm
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Scott Mouw