Have you seen the latest Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) class action lawsuit? TCPA litigations in the communications, energy and media industries are dominating the headlines, with companies paying up to millions of dollars in damages. Consumer disputes have increased more than 500 percent in the past five years, and regulations continue to tighten. Now more than ever, it’s crucial to build effective and cost-efficient contact strategies. But how? First, know your facts. Second, let us help.
What is the TCPA?
As you’re aware, TCPA aims to safeguard consumer privacy by regulating telephone solicitations and the use of prerecorded messages, auto-dialed calls, text messages and unsolicited faxes. The rule has been amended and more tightly defined over time.
Why is TCPA compliance important?
Businesses found guilty of violating TCPA regulations face steep penalties – fines range from $500 to $1500 per individual infraction! Companies have been delivered hefty penalties upwards of hundreds of thousands, and in some cases, millions of dollars. Many have questions and are seeking to understand how they might adjust their policies and call practices.
How can you protect yourself?
To help avoid risk for compliance violations, it’s integral to assess call strategies and put best practices in place to increase right-party contact rates. Strategies to gain compliance and mitigate risk include:
- Focus on right and wrong-party contact to improve customer service: Monitoring and verifying consumer contact information can seem like a tedious task, but with the right combination of data, including skip tracing data from consumer credit data, alternative and other exclusive data sources, past-due consumers can be located faster.
- Scrub often for updated or verified information: Phone numbers can continuously change, and they’re only one piece of a consumer’s contact information. Verifying contact information for TCPA compliance with a partner you can trust can help make data quality routine.
- Determine when and how often you dial cell phones: Or, given new considerations proposed by the CFPB, consider looking at collections via your consumers’ preferred communication channel – online vs. over the phone.
- Provide consumers user-friendly mechanisms to opt-out of receiving communications
At Experian, our TCPA solutions can help you monitor and verify consumer contact information, locate past-due consumers, improve your right-party contact rates and automate your collections process.