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CONTACT: Patricia Van Gerpen, (605) 773-3201 

PUC issues consumer advisory on Do-Not-Call list

Consumers need to be cautious about signing up for drawings or product samples if they do not wish to have telemarketers call them on their phones, according to the South Dakota Public Utility Commission.

"Consumers need to be careful when giving out their phone numbers during trade and home shows," said PUC Chairman Gary Hanson. "We often get complaints about unwanted phone solicitations after people have attended product shows and fairs because they accidentally exempted themselves from the Do-Not-Call list."

PUC Vice Chairman Bob Sahr said, "People sometimes forget that by writing down their home or cell phone numbers while signing up for free drawings, they may have given that business or entity permission to contact them via the information they've shared."

Commissioner Dusty Johnson added, "We just want to make sure South Dakotans are aware of this situation – and that they remember to read the fine print before freely giving out their phone numbers. This applies not only to land line phone numbers but to cell numbers as well."  

If a consumer gives this information to a business willingly, that will override the fact that the individual is registered on the national and state Do-Not-Call list. The PUC has received numerous complaints from consumers who believe they've been taken advantage of by companies trying to circumvent the DNC list. The PUC asks consumers to be vigilant about protecting their contact information.

South Dakotans are encouraged to call the PUC Consumer Office at 1-800-332-1782 if they have questions or concerns regarding the DNC list. If you wish to add your land or cell phone numbers to the DNC list, click on or call 1-888-382-1222.