For several reasons, I spend a small amount of time each month getting off junk mail lists. It’s not all about the environment, though I do care about wasteful ways, landfills that are at capacity and natural resources. Environmentalists and the ‘save the earth’ peeps have valid points about ridding us all of junk mail, but really, the reason I invest a bit of time into getting off lists is all about me, my privacy and my safety. Let’s cover how to stop unwanted junk mail from Spectrum TWC.
Junk mail is an inconvenience.
Nearly 90% is unwanted solicitations for everything from insurance and investments to mortgages and new homes for sale to cellphone service, home improvement and donation solicitations. I donate to what I care about and no amount of mail asking for donations will convince me to donate to a charity I don’t know, haven’t worked with, etc.
It’s not a secret that most companies gather and sell their own customer’s information. It’s not just Spectrum. My mortgage company, insurance company, power and water company and even my DMV sells my information FOR PROFIT.
I’d vote for the next person who can come up with a platform requiring PERMISSION from the customer and possibly even LICENSING FEES paid to a customer PRIOR to any selling, sharing, renting or otherwise disseminating a customer’s personal information, including mailing address, email address, cellphone or landline numbers. I know, you say, hey, then businesses will hurt because they do derive business from solicitations. I get it. Businesses need to sell to survive. But, they don’t need to sell customer information, too.
I’m crazy about my name and address in my mailbox. Hence, I don’t want the junk mail in it. All the bills or important documents come to me electronically via eMail. If I get something in the mail 95% of the time, it’s junk that I just shred, once I attempt to get off their mailing list. BUT, with each piece of junk mail comes a certain amount of personal information tucked neatly in my mail box.
Maybe it’s my full name? Maybe it’s my maiden name? It is certainly my name and a valid address. What does it take to establish residency somewhere? In LA, I think you just need an address and having the homeowner’s name gives way to claiming that a room is being rented in the home. I get mail for one Matthew Yardley on a regular basis. I’m sure he has established residency using my address, because it’s just been in the past 9 months that my mailbox is being flooded with mail for him. Bills, etc.
Sometimes I leave town for six-ten weeks. I can only stop my mail for 30 days. After 30 days, the mail is delivered to my box, junk mail making it overflow. It’s like a billboard telling everyone who passes that my overflowing mailbox is because I’m out of town.
Criminals Love Junkmail
Our trash has a wealth of information and criminals know it. One of the reasons I take all the mailing labels off boxes I receive and shred along with all the junk mail labels, is that once the trash is on the street, it’s not against the law for someone to dumpster dive in the recycle bin.
I have a home in two different states. Because the one city I have a home in has problems with people walking up to mailboxes and stealing mail, I work really hard to make sure junk mail is reduced. These mail stealers aren’t looking for what I receive in the mail, instead, they seek my personal information.
True story. A few years back, a piece of mail was misdelivered to a neighbor. I had no idea. Within the year, the fraud department from the company where I had my IRA reached out to let me know that my IRA documents were submitted on a loan that I wasn’t a part of. The criminals took my name off (good ole Photoshop) and inserted their name. However the account numbers and balances on my statement were left untouched. Thank goodness someone did their due diligence in checking this out.
How to Stop Junk Mail
If you have similar junk mail problems, you can cut down the amount of mail received by opting out of mailings. Here is my how-to:
- Put all the junk mail in a pile for a week.
- Find an hour to peruse the pieces in the junk mail pile, looking at each piece of mail for instructions to Opt-out.
- Find a company website, as most companies have websites, and search for privacy policies and opt-out instructions
- Make a request via their site, to remove your information from the database and to put you on a do-not rent/sell/share list and ask for confirmation.
- ONE LAST STEP I FIND EFFECTIVE
- Write in your handwriting on the piece of junk mail the following: Requested Opt-Out of Marketing and date.
- Take a photo of this piece of mail showing your note and the mailing label.
- Find an e-mail address if available for customer service, marketing, advertising department. (Sometimes, I actually get response when I tweet to a company requesting an email address).
- eMail the photo of the mail piece, along with another request in the body of the email, similar to one below. Feel free to copy and paste.
To whom it may concern. I have completed an Opt-Out Request on your website.I do not wish to have my name used for marketing/sales/advertising purposes from your company, your partners or entities. Further, do not sell, rent or share my information with anyone outside of your company. I appreciate your prompt action and request a return email stating my request has been processed.
It takes some time. Do a little each week and eventually, junk mail will diminish until someone else sells your name.
Stop Unwanted Junk Mail from Spectrum TWC
Here’s how to stop junk mail and the selling of your personal information by Spectrum/TWC. The form in on their website and encompasses everything from the types of ads they show on television and streaming to the snail mail, email marketing they do. Good Luck.
If this article was helpful, please let me know with your comment below. Next time, I’ll share how I got rid of all the junky weekly circulars, yet I always know what’s on sale. Check back and save money so you can cook some of my yummy recipes.
A Midwest woman who moved to Los Angeles writing about her passions; clean eating and Keto, chemical-free cleaning, all natural diets for dogs and other ways to improve your life and those around you. Big bonus if you’re always looking for a helpful gadget on Amazon.