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Awaiting Final Word On Smart & Final
Emmanuelle Richard commented on the utter evaporation of consumer privacy on one of my posts about the Smart & Final incident:

Amy, you would be amazed at the number of sources those people resell each other. The bad part is, that they do it (starting with your bank) and wait for you to ask to be removed. It's truly disgusting. Just start from the principle that everytime you give a phone or address, including to Sephora to receive coupons or to Pizza Hut to order a pizza that it may end up somewhere.

For anyone who hasn't read the previous entries on this, I got a recorded message annoyance call from Smart & Final to inform me that, glory be, they'd restocked their shelves! This, despite my presence on the Do Not Call List, and despite the fact that I would have to be out of my mind to write anything other than "Mrs. Klaus, North Pole, and 310-555-1212 on those "join your supermarket" cards. Still, perhaps I lapsed. Perhaps, but unlikely. I've written to Randall Oliver, the Smart & Final Director Of Corporate Communications to find out more.

Randall, Regarding your contention that I've pasted in below (in italics):
Our calling list was generated from information provided to us by our customers on their SmartAdvantage Card applications. We did not obtain that information through any kind of intrusive search. The service that transmits the voicemail message checks all of the numbers against the National Do Not Call Registry prior to sending the message. We regret that your number was somehow missed in that process.

It is so against my principles and utterly out of habit for me to fill out anything other than "Mrs. Klaus" on one of those intrusive, irritating cards your stores and others use to bribe customers into giving up information in exchange for savings. I absolutely cannot imagine that I put my number on that card. I just never do that. I'd like to see my application to see my number on that card. Otherwise, I'd like to know how you got it off my credit card or by what other method you might have extracted it.

I await your response. -Amy Alkon

Is it possible for a merchant to secretly suck your address and phone number off your credit card? If so, is it legal?

For any other merchants out there who'd like to call me and irritate me about the status of your shelves, etc., I will accept your calls for a fee: $100, minimum, payable in advance, for your telephoned promotional messages of five minutes or less. See the "Contact Amy" link on the left for the address to send your check or money order. I will be ready to take your call anytime between 5:15pm and 5:30pm, weekdays, as soon as your check clears. Call before it clears, and my price doubles!

Posted by aalkon at October 29, 2005 8:05 AM

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