In this day and age of emails and texts, many times the only thing coming through your home's mailbox is junk mail.
Carol Rees is a senior citizen who is on a fixed income and who gets a lot of junk mail.
“I didn't know what to do anymore,” she told News 5. “I thought, ‘Will this never end?’"
Rees said she kept getting mailings from the Council for Retirement Security. She ignored them for a while, but then was curious.
“I finally opened one up and read it through and it sounded good," Rees recalled.
Despite her low-income, she gave $20 which, in the info packet, was called a one-time donation. "I felt really good about myself,” said Rees. “I've done a little bit for my fellow senior."
Rees said that opened the flood gates. More mail came from the Council for Retirement Security and other organizations under the parent company Our Generation, Inc. She then wrote a letter asking for them to stop. "Well, about 10 days later, I got four more of these kits in the mail," said Rees.
She wrote another letter.
"After I made it very clear you are to leave me alone,” wrote Rees. “You asked for repeated one-time contributions…this is the 3rd request to leave me alone.”
What can you do?
To cut down on junk mail, the Federal Trade Commission recommends you opt out of prescreened offers of credit and insurance by going to optoutprescreen.com or calling 888-5-opt-out. For 2 bucks, you can curtail mail through the Direct Marketing Association's site dmachoice.org. You can also use Catalog Choice that will help do the same. All are options for Rees, too. "I just want them to leave me alone,” said Rees.
On Your Side Investigators have contacted Our Generation, Inc. but we have not heard anything back.
Here’s more info from the FTC:
Consumer Reporting Companies
If you decide that you don't want to receive prescreened offers of credit and insurance, you have two choices: You can opt out of receiving them for five years or opt out of receiving them permanently.
To opt out for five years: Call toll-free 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688) or visit www.optoutprescreen.com. The phone number and website are operated by the major consumer reporting companies.
To opt out permanently: You may begin the permanent Opt-Out process online at www.optoutprescreen.com. To complete your request, you must return the signed Permanent Opt-Out Election form, which will be provided after you initiate your online request.
When you call or visit the website, you'll be asked to provide certain personal information, including your home telephone number, name, Social Security number, and date of birth. The information you provide is confidential and will be used only to process your request to opt out.
If you don't have access to the Internet, you may send a written request to permanently opt out to each of the major consumer reporting companies. Make sure your request includes your home telephone number, name, Social Security number, and date of birth.
P.O. Box 919
Allen, TX 75013
Name Removal Option
P.O. Box 505
Woodlyn, PA 19094
P.O. Box 740123
Atlanta, GA 30374
Innovis Consumer Assistance
P.O. Box 495
Pittsburgh, PA 15230
Mail and Email
Consumers can register at the Direct Marketing Association's (DMA) consumer website: www.DMAchoice.org for a processing fee of $2 for a period of ten years. Registering online is the fastest way to see results. DMAchoice offers consumers a simple, step-by-step process that enables them to decide what mail they do and do not want.
In addition, DMAchoice online offers registration for DMA's eMail Preference Service (reduce your unsolicited commercial email);
If you do not wish to complete your registration online, you can register for DMAchoice by using the mail-in form that is online: fill out the DMAChoice Mail In Form with all required information, print it and mail to the address below.
Or, if you do not have access to the Internet, you can register by sending your name and address (with signature), along with a $3 processing fee (check or money order payable to DMA) to:
Data & Marketing Association
P.O. Box 643
Carmel, NY 10512