Unwanted calls can be more annoying, disruptive, and even scary. If you keep getting calls from unknown numbers, you may be targetted by marketing companies, spammers, or even someone trying to blackmail you. This is why you should not answer unwanted calls, and you should never disclose any information (such as “I’m at work”) to anyone calling from an unknown number. There are several technological tools that you can use to find out who is behind an unknown number, and here we talk about the most important ones:
A Reverse Phone Lookup
Several online services will allow you to perform a reverse phone lookup. The one that we recommend the most is checkpeople. Using their advanced search technology, they are able to disclose all the information behind a telephone number. A reverse phone lookup is fast, and their service is reliable and cheap. Think about investing in a yearly membership (that allows you to perform as many searches as you need) if for some reason you believe you are especially targetted by phone scammers.
Download Apps for Caller Recognition
Search the Number on Google
Several sites compile scam numbers or numbers from marketing companies. A simple Google search may give you useful information to recognize these numbers and block them. Some of the things that may come up in a Google search are user warnings about specific numbers, information about the company or individuals behind certain numbers, and information on how to report them.
Some Important Security Tips
If your children have telephones, it’s better to block all calls from numbers that are not registered in their contacts. To do this, you just need to go to the telephone settings and choose this option from the menu. Remember that children are especially vulnerable and unwanted callers can be very dangerous. Talk to your kids about security issues and let them know it is never okay to disclose any information to anyone they don’t know. Ask them never to give their number to anyone over social media, and keep a close and vigilant eye on their conversations. There are also several parental control apps available, so think about installing them before they can use their phones, and find those best suited for their age.
The other vulnerable demographic is senior citizens. The FBI has set a special number to report telephone fraud (most of them include asking for money to send a prize they won or establishing a romantic “relationship” to get money from them). It is very important to ask them not to answer unwanted calls, never disclose their information, and never agree to send money to an unknown caller. It is recommended to monitor their social media interactions, as they are usually more trusting and can believe someone is their “friend” after a few conversations.
Register your Telephone in the “Do Not Call List”
By law, you are entitled to register your numbers to this list that ensures that marketing companies cannot call you. However, not all numbers will be blocked. Some companies that perform telephone surveys, non-profits, and politicians can still call you. Registering to the Do Not Call list is very easy, you just need to call 1-888-382-1222. The list is available for landlines and mobile phones. Every communications provider is responsible to comply with your registration. If you think your rights were violated, you can make a complaint, and your company will be notified. Remember that the Do Not Call registry is only available for personal numbers, business numbers cannot apply.
In a world permeated by technology, it is very difficult to block all unwanted calls, but there are a few tools that can help keep you safe. Remember that telephone fraud is really common, so don’t answer questions about any kind of sensitive or personal information. Reporting attempts of telephone fraud is complicated, but you can help other users by leaving reviews online.