Tips to Stop Unwanted Robo and Spam Calls
If you have a U.S.-based phone number, you have probably answered one or hundreds of robocalls. Not only are they annoying, but you may wonder – where do they come from? You may also wonder if any laws can regulate these calls and what steps you can take to reduce or eliminate them for good.
Don’t worry, you aren’t alone. Millions of people are tired of and frustrated with these calls and searching for effective ways to get rid of them. Unfortunately, things like caller ID spoofing have made this more challenging than ever before. While this is true, it doesn’t mean you don’t have options. Keep reading for more information about spam calls and what you can do to stop them.
Origins of Spam Calls
When people discuss spam calls, they are usually referring to one of four types of calls.
One is telemarketing calls, which come from a live person who is trying to sell something from an actual business. While these calls can be annoying, they aren’t fraudulent.
Another type is legal robocalls. These are automated and usually provide reminders of things like services, bills, notifications, and more. This is not spam in most cases.
Illegal robocalls and scam calls are the ones you have to worry about. These are the calls that include prerecorded messages that you never signed up to receive or a live person trying to defraud you. Unfortunately, some of these are highly effective and cost honest people a lot of money.
Now that you know what type of calls you may receive, it’s time to find out what you can do about them.
Register on the “Do Not Call” List
One of the first steps you should take to eliminate unwanted calls is to add your phone number to the National Do Not Call Registry. This will help reduce the number of legitimate businesses calling you.
Unfortunately, this isn’t going to stop all the scammers. While this is true, it is one layer of defense you can put in place.
Utilize the Spam-Blocking App from Your Carrier
Now that the TRACED Act is a law, carriers are allowed to block spam, all in the background, without you having to do anything about it. While this is true, most carriers provide apps, as well, which offer more features.
Installing the app designed by your phone carrier is supposed to reduce spam calls. However, there is no real way to determine the effectiveness of these apps. While they may work from time to time, they probably won’t block or properly label all spam calls that come to your number.
Install a Third-Party Blocking App
Look for “spam call blocker” apps in your phone’s app store. Chances are you will find more than a few options. Most of the apps will require you to pay for a subscription, and some collect and share information about the calls you receive. Again, it is not always possible to determine if the apps work, either. Because of this, it is a decision you should make for yourself.
Block Calls from Anyone Not in Your Contact List
Smartphones typically provide a method to block calls from anyone who is not on your contact list. While this may sound great, it may also block calls from your doctor’s office, job interviews, or automated messages from schools or other important locations.
While this is true, the calls will still appear in your phone call log. You can also hear the voicemail if one is left. This is another way to block calls but one you should use carefully.
Getting Rid of Spam Calls
Unfortunately, it may not be possible to eliminate all spam calls. While this is true, you can take steps to help ensure that you minimize the number of these calls you receive. Keep the tips here in mind to get the best results possible and reduce the spam calls you receive daily.