Rude Awakening: Robocalls In The Wee Hours

An Omaha family says a West Coast telemarketer needs a wake-up call from a government agency. When you see the time on caller ID you'll understand why.

“It's a call that would frighten us all. “Middle of the night, phone rings, pop up out of bed.” Terry Smith’s first thought? “Something bad happened to one of the kids.”

But nobody is on the line. Caller ID shows Galaxy Fitness with a California area code. “I came down here and slept on the couch actually, trying to figure out who it was.”

Terry isn’t the only one getting a rude awakening. Fact Finders googled the number which originates in San Francisco and look what we found, complaints from people all over the country getting calls at all hours. There's one at 7 a.m., midnight, 2 a.m. and just before 3 a.m.

The Nebraska Public Service Commission’s Anne Boyle has a suspicion the calls aren't to sell gym memberships. “They can capture your telephone number, keep a record of that and start using it for other purposes.”

Though a California area code, Boyle suspects the robocaller is overseas and time zone difference explains the 3 a.m. calls. She'll push federal agencies to trace the number. “I absolutely will, it’s an invasion of our privacy, of our time.”

Terry called the number to leave a complaint. “I'd like to check into a situation about calls after hours.” But he won't lose any sleep waiting for a call back to apologize. “What kind of business is that at 3 in the morning?”

A Federal Trade Commission spokesman says the federal agency will look into the complaints. Fact Finders contacted two Galaxy Fitness Clubs in other states and both said it’s not them making the calls.


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