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Junk Mail Junkie No More!

By Ellie Kay
Financial Columnist

CBN.comAccording to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American will spend more time in 2009 answering junk mail (69 hours) than they will spend in spiritual activities (15 hours).

If you want more hours in your day for worthy pursuits, then here are a few easy ways to cut down on the amount of unsolicited intrusions on your time.

National Do Not Call Registry – To stop telemarketing solicitors, call 1-888-382-1222 or go to www.donotcall.gov and register all your phone numbers. Don’t forget to register cell phone numbers as well because these numbers are now released to telemarketers and the consumer pays for the call. Telemarketers should not call your number once it has been on the registry for 31 days. If they do, you can file a complaint at this Web site.

Spam-a-lot - Be judicious about where you register your e-mail address so that it will not be sold to spammers. Set up a “Spam E-mail” account that is used just for registrations, sweepstakes, bulletin boards, etc. Set the blocking filters on your e-mail account to “high.” Your present virus protector or Internet provider may already offer free spam filters, so be sure to use what you can for free before you purchase filtering software or find free spam filtering software at www.spamarrest.com or www.mailwasher.com.

Snail Mail - Send a postcard or letter to Mail Preference Service, Direct Marketing Association, PO Box 643, Carmel, NY 15012-0643. Include your complete name, address, zip code, and a request to "activate the preference service". Or, for a $5 fee, you can register online at www.dmaconsumers.org. For up to five years, this will stop mail from all member organizations that you have not specifically ordered products from.

Credit Card Applications - Stopping this is easy. You just need your address, former address within two years, and social security number. One call does it all for agencies Equifax, Trans Union, Experian, and Innovis. Dial 1-888-5 OPT OUT (or 1-888-567-8688)* 24 hours a day. Also, call your credit card companies and ask them to stop.

*NOTE: This is a legitimate number. Please see the Snopes article for more information.


Ellie Kay

Ellie Kay is a national radio commentator, a frequent media guest, a popular international speaker, and the best-selling author of ten books including her most recent release, A Tip A Day With Ellie Kay:  Twelve Months Worth of Money Savings Ideas (Moody, 2008).

For money savings links or to subscribe to Ellie’s free newsletter, go to www.elliekay.com.   

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