Answering a call that a random stranger yells at you and threatens you for allegedly owing IRS money is confusing and frustrating. Robocalls are not only annoying, but they ultimately cheat people who do not know their money better.
While it's not possible to completely prevent robocalls from reaching your phone, there are a few steps you can take to reduce the number of calls you receive.
We treatedbut it's worth revisiting
What type of calls is allowed?
It is logical to think that any appeals, be it from a campaign or a charity, are under the umbrella of unwanted robocalls and are therefore illegal. Unfortunately, this is not the case.
Views from political campaigns, debt collectors, and charities are allowed. What is not allowed are the calls from the fake IRS agents or the companies claiming you have won a free vacation in the Bahamas.
According to the FCC, there are some simple steps to reduce robocalls:
- Do not answer calls from blocked or unknown numbers.
- Do not answer calls from numbers you do not know.
- If someone calls you and claims to be with the company XYZ, hang up and call the company itself. Use the company's website to find an official number.
- When you answer a call and record like "Hello, can you hear me?" Listen, just hang up.
- The same is true for a phone call asking you to press a number before joining a coworker.
When you answer a call and interact with the voice message or by pressing a number, the spammer will know that your number is real. You can then sell your number to another company or target your number more often.
If you receive a lot of spam messages, you can forward the message to number 7726 (SPAM). It will not stop the number from immediately texting you, but it will allow your wearer to investigate where it comes from and finish it.
Contact Your Provider
Telephone companies know how frustrating robocalls are for their customers and have taken steps to help users block the annoying calls on their systems. For example, AT & T's Call Protect app is available for Android and iOS users. When the app is installed and set up, AT & T automatically blocks fraudulent calls, warns of suspicious spam calls, and allows you to block unwanted calls from a specific number for free. The AT & T app has advanced call monitoring features, such as: Reverse Number Lookup, which requires a monthly subscription.
Verizon offers a similar service to its Fios customers.
Contact your service provider to see if similar features are available.
Use an app!
If your provider does not offer an app or service to reduce robokalls, or it's just too expensive, there are many third-party apps available.
You want to find an app that works on your device, offers automatic call barring and spam alerts for suspicious calls, and has the ability to easily report a number when a call goes through.
Hiya is a free app that I've been using successfully on Android and iOS for some time. It's the same company that runs AT & T's Call Protect app, as well as Samsung's integrated call block and spam protection service. Samsung Galaxy users can enable the built-in service in the Phone app under Settings > Caller ID and Spam Protection . Setup is painless and provides an easy way to report a number.
Nomorobo is the service that Verizon uses for its Fios users, but it also has a phone app. The service is free for VoIP users and costs $ 1.99 per month for mobile users. Additional services that provide similar features include YouMail and RoboKiller.
If you proactively make calls to your number using unknown calls and use a service (paid or free), you can reduce the number of unwanted calls and spam on your phone.