AT&T Unable to Stop Subscriber Database Theft; 300 Million Names and Numbers May Have Been Harvested

Claims made in a federal lawsuit (pdf) by AT&T against two individuals and a Utah-based group of companies, reveal what may be the largest so called data mining, name and phone number harvesting scheme to be conducted in the United States. If proven accurate, this suit completely disassembles the whole -we have permission to call- fabrication, which leads from Utah, through several states, and right to the front door of my home. Read more of this post


UPDATE: 253-246-8514 Calling John in Michigan

I briefly wrote about John from Michigan getting the Tom calls from the phone number 253-246-8514 last month, and I thought I would post an update on the activity surrounding this number. John emailed me a photo of his wireless phone’s call log screen which was filled with numbers associated with telemarketers.

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Important Phone Provider Survey


This informal, anecdotal survey doesn’t provide any data to support the claim that users of one single provider are more likely to get the “Tom” calls. However, it’s clear to me now that the bulk of readers are responding about calls to their wireless phones. This is what frustrated me as well; the relentless calls to my cell phone. And it helps explain the lack of caller ID information shared by readers, specifically what company names are displayed in the CID window, as wireless phones just show the number.

Thank you!


I have reason to believe that consumers using a specific phone provider may be more likely than others to receive the “Tom/Shawn/John with Home Protection” calls. Please take the survey below and help me collect some anecdotal data.

This Facebook Post Describes the Problem Perfectly!

From a reader on Facebook:

For the past three months or so, I’ve been getting frequent calls from Tom with Home Protection that came from various cities in Washington and Oregon. Initially, I blocked the first number through my cell phone service, but ended up still getting calls from other numbers. I tried blocking a couple more of the main numbers and that seemed to work for a while. However, the calls started again and so I decided to see if I could stop them by opting out through the automated menu; (emphasis added) that didn’t work because I started getting even more calls.

This morning, I got a call from 704-200-9912 (Charlotte, NC) that I didn’t answer. Just a few minutes ago, I tried calling back but all I got was a recording that the number had been changed or disconnected. I guess that means they’ll be moving onto a new number shortly.

We know who’s in North Carolina right? What a surprise that trying to opt out resulted in even more calls. My experience has been that the harder I’ve tried to get off the calling list of these lead generators, the more calls I would get. I even provided a fake name and number in one “opt out”. Within a few weeks the calls started again, this time asking for the fake name. Ridiculous!

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