How to Stop Unwanted Faxes

Unsolicited faxes waste paper and ink.
Unsolicited faxes waste paper and ink. (Image: kalleboo/, slashcrisis/, bennylin0724/, NIOSH/

American consumers know about the 2003 National Do Not Call Registry. Less renowned is the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), which legislated junk faxes 12 years earlier. A 2004 Harris Poll found 53 percent of consumers received far fewer telemarketing calls after entry on the Registry. Yet many offices are still inundated with fax offers for hot stocks and discounted Bahamas vacations. Just three daily unsolicited faxes total more than 1000 pages per year. To completely stop junk faxes, turn off your machine. If you long to be green, but aren't prepared for so draconian a method, alleviate junk faxes with a few proactive steps.

Things You'll Need

  • Fax machine
  • Telephone
  • Fax to email software

Call to remove yourself from the marketing list. The 2005 Junk Fax Prevention Act requires all fax marketers to provide an opt-out telephone number.

Opt out.
Opt out.

Review your fax machine documentation. It may be possible to block your machine from receiving certain fax numbers.

Learn more about your fax machine's capabilities.
Learn more about your fax machine's capabilities.

Utilize fax-to-email or Web-based fax software. Both allow you to review and delete junk faxes prior to printing them, thereby saving resources.

File an online complaint with the FCC. The FCC fines fax marketers according to the number of complaints it receives.

Complain to the FCC.
Complain to the FCC.

Sue violators. Under the TCPA, you may be entitled to $500 in damages for each junk fax.

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