Spammed by marketing texts? Here’s how to stop them

Replying ‘STOP’ isn’t always the best response

If you're annoyed by the increase in marketing text messages, there are ways to stop them.

SAN ANTONIO – Text marketing is on the rise. If you’re fed up with unwanted text messages, there are some ways to put a stop to them.

Ruth Lalangui gave her phone number to DressBarn while placing an online order, but she didn’t realize she’d start getting spam texts.

“Every single day. In the morning, in the evening, in the afternoon. It’s too much,” she said.

Sometimes people opt-in to these types of texts without even knowing it. What was worse for Lalangui was that the texts she got didn’t include a clear way to opt out.

If you’re getting spammed with text messages, there are some things you can do.

“If the message does offer a way to opt out, do that. You can also forward unwanted texts to 7726. It’s free and it helps your carrier take action,” said Consumer Reports Finance and Tech Expert Octavio Blanco.

Your phone or carrier should also give you the option to block the number to stop them from sending you more messages.

If you’re getting messages you never agreed to, you can file a complaint with the FCC or FTC.

“Be careful when entering your phone number online. You may need to uncheck a box to opt-out of marketing texts or emails,” Blanco said.

If you’re getting unwanted texts, you can check the company’s online privacy policy for a way to opt out.

In Lalangui’s situation, DressBarn’s opt-out policy states you can unsubscribe from its marketing text messages by replying STOP.

Unwanted texts can definitely be annoying, but some can be dangerous. Scammers may text you as a way to trick you out of personal information. It’s a tactic called smishing.

Scammers may text you claiming to be from a government agency. They may sound urgent and ask for an immediate response. They may even sound friendly or use your name.

“If you get a suspicious text you didn’t sign up for, don’t reply even if it says to ‘text STOP’ to opt-out. Block the number then delete the text,” Blanco said.

You can also sign up for the government’s Do Not Call Registry by clicking here. It also covers unwanted text messages.

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About the Author:

As a consumer reporter, Marilyn is all about helping people stay safe and save a buck. Since coming to KSAT in 1985, she’s covered everything from crime to politics, winning awards for her coverage of the Mexican Mafia, Oklahoma tornadoes, children’s transplants, an investigation into voting irregularities and even a hit-and-run Santa Claus.