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Cow Poke
11-12-2018, 10:12 AM
OK, so I was getting inundated with telemarketers and scammers on my cell phone - I've had the same number for probably 20+ years, and I would easily get 10-20 nuisance calls PER DAY. I absolutely HATE paying for phone service where the MAJORITY of incoming calls are nuisance calls.

A couple months ago, I finally downloaded "Call Protect" app, and set it up on my AT&T cell phone.

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I was amazed how many "telemarketer" phone calls (it actually applies that Caller ID - Telemarketer - to the call) it intercepted, and I was able to choose (in the app) "block".

Within WEEKS, I wasn't even getting many telemarketer calls at all, and I would check the app, and it had blocked MANY calls, not even allowing them to ring through.

A couple minutes ago, I got a telemarketer call - not caller ID'd as such - so I added it to the "Blocked" list in the app. AND, it occurred to me that it has now been WEEKS since I've gotten more than two or three such annoyance calls per week.

QuantaFille
11-12-2018, 10:56 AM
Thanks for the tip. I'm going to have to try this. I've had my AT&T phone number for about 15 years and while I don't get quite as many calls as you, I still get them and it is annoying.

Cow Poke
11-12-2018, 10:59 AM
Thanks for the tip. I'm going to have to try this. I've had my AT&T phone number for about 15 years and while I don't get quite as many calls as you, I still get them and it is annoying.

In the app, even if it didn't show up as a telemarketer, and you discover it is, you have the option of reporting it as spam or telemarketer or whatever AND/OR blocking that number.

I had a spate of telemarketers coming from phone numbers with the same area code and local exchange as me - making it appear they might be friends or colleagues. I was getting a BUNCH of those, and would just block each one "Hi, This is Betty - do NOT HANG UP..." click! (Report / Block)

rogue06
11-12-2018, 11:02 AM
OK, so I was getting inundated with telemarketers and scammers on my cell phone - I've had the same number for probably 20+ years, and I would easily get 10-20 nuisance calls PER DAY. I absolutely HATE paying for phone service where the MAJORITY of incoming calls are nuisance calls.

A couple months ago, I finally downloaded "Call Protect" app, and set it up on my AT&T cell phone.

32955

I was amazed how many "telemarketer" phone calls (it actually applies that Caller ID - Telemarketer - to the call) it intercepted, and I was able to choose (in the app) "block".

Within WEEKS, I wasn't even getting many telemarketer calls at all, and I would check the app, and it had blocked MANY calls, not even allowing them to ring through.

A couple minutes ago, I got a telemarketer call - not caller ID'd as such - so I added it to the "Blocked" list in the app. AND, it occurred to me that it has now been WEEKS since I've gotten more than two or three such annoyance calls per week.
I wonder if they got something like that for land lines.

The problem I have are telemarketers using fake phone numbers. I even had one who would call and my own number would show up on the caller I.D. I would always ask how they could be calling me from my own phone which was in my hand causing them to hang up quickly.

Cow Poke
11-12-2018, 11:03 AM
I wonder if they got something like that for land lines.

The problem I have are telemarketers using fake phone numbers. I even had one who would call and my own number would show up on the caller I.D. I would always ask how they could be calling me from my own phone which was in my hand causing them to hang up quickly.

I haven't had a landline in ages, but I seem to remember that most providers have such a service, but some charge a monthly fee for it.

I use the FREE version of this app, but I think you can upgrade for more functions - which I don't seem to need.

Littlejoe
11-12-2018, 11:04 AM
I have Verizon and apparently they don't have a comparable app...:sad: I get about 5 - 10 robocalls a day

rogue06
11-12-2018, 11:04 AM
I haven't had a landline in ages
I haven't had a cell phone since the late 80s.

Cow Poke
11-12-2018, 11:06 AM
I use the FREE version of this app, but I think you can upgrade for more functions - which I don't seem to need.

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Cow Poke
11-12-2018, 11:07 AM
I have Verizon and apparently they don't have a comparable app...:sad: I get about 5 - 10 robocalls a day

And don't those robocalls seem to come at the most inopportune moments? :rant:

TheWall
11-12-2018, 11:44 AM
You have student loans.
No i dont

mossrose
11-12-2018, 12:13 PM
I wonder if they got something like that for land lines.

The problem I have are telemarketers using fake phone numbers. I even had one who would call and my own number would show up on the caller I.D. I would always ask how they could be calling me from my own phone which was in my hand causing them to hang up quickly.

That's happened to me, and when I asked our phone company about it, they recommended that you not answer a call that shows your own number. We also get calls from businesses in town that end up being spam calls. So the scammers/spammers are able to somehow take an existing number and use it for their own nefarious purposes.

As for spam to my cell phone, I only use my phone for emergencies, and it sits in my bedroom or my purse when I'm home, so I never even hear it ring, let alone answer it. I tend to get more spam texts than calls.

One Bad Pig
11-12-2018, 12:17 PM
I wonder if they got something like that for land lines.

The problem I have are telemarketers using fake phone numbers. I even had one who would call and my own number would show up on the caller I.D. I would always ask how they could be calling me from my own phone which was in my hand causing them to hang up quickly.
Yeah, most of the calls I get are fake numbers these days (first 6 digits of my number, followed by 4 random numbers), on both cell and landline.

Cow Poke
11-12-2018, 12:25 PM
As for spam to my cell phone, I only use my phone for emergencies, and it sits in my bedroom or my purse when I'm home, so I never even hear it ring, let alone answer it. I tend to get more spam texts than calls.

That's why you never accept my call? :sad:

mossrose
11-12-2018, 12:32 PM
That's why you never accept my call? :sad:

I don't think you have my cell phone number.

If you are going to call my landline, pm me with your number first and I will answer!

Cow Poke
11-12-2018, 12:58 PM
I don't think you have my cell phone number.

If you are going to call my landline, pm me with your number first and I will answer!

Mayhaps one day we shall have to voicicate.

Sparko
11-13-2018, 08:57 AM
I have Verizon and apparently they don't have a comparable app...:sad: I get about 5 - 10 robocalls a day

I have verizon. I use an app called Hiya, which is free unless you want to pay for extras. It does a decent job of blocking spam

https://hiya.com/

Cow Poke
11-13-2018, 09:12 AM
I have verizon. I use an app called Hiya, which is free unless you want to pay for extras. It does a decent job of blocking spam

https://hiya.com/

The AT&T app is made by Hiya. :yes:

Sparko
11-13-2018, 09:19 AM
The AT&T app is made by Hiya. :yes:

i had to go into my phone settings and give permission for hiya to block calls. And I set all of the various parameters to aggressively block the calls. It maintains a list of spam numbers that I told it to block, and it can block neighborhood scam calls (same prefix) or just notify you as potential scam. I told it to block because I don't know anyone else with my particular prefix. I let it scan my contacts list to get a list of numbers to always let through.

Littlejoe
11-13-2018, 09:24 AM
i had to go into my phone settings and give permission for hiya to block calls. And I set all of the various parameters to aggressively block the calls. It maintains a list of spam numbers that I told it to block, and it can block neighborhood scam calls (same prefix) or just notify you as potential scam. I told it to block because I don't know anyone else with my particular prefix. I let it scan my contacts list to get a list of numbers to always let through.
Awesome! Thanks! I'll check that out!

Cow Poke
11-16-2018, 02:21 PM
Just got notified by AT&T that Mobile Security is now added FREE (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/at-t-mobile-security/id1218465964?mt=8) for your devices...

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lee_merrill
11-17-2018, 05:51 PM
I subscribed to the "Do not call" (https://www.donotcall.gov/register/reg.aspx) registry, though some telemarketers seem to disregard that! But it did help...

Blessings,
Lee

Cow Poke
11-17-2018, 06:32 PM
I subscribed to the "Do not call" (https://www.donotcall.gov/register/reg.aspx) registry, though some telemarketers seem to disregard that! But it did help...

Blessings,
Lee


Yes, anybody who had not done that needs to do it.... but be sure to use the correct URL - there are some scam sites out there.

https://www.donotcall.gov/

Littlejoe
11-18-2018, 05:22 AM
Yeah, I registered my cell on the Do Not Call registry but it doesn't seem to help in my case...:sigh:

Cow Poke
11-18-2018, 05:35 AM
Yeah, I registered my cell on the Do Not Call registry but it doesn't seem to help in my case...:sigh:

I registered my cell way back when that first became an option, then renewed it after 5 years (which was required at that time), but, yeah, didn't seem to help much. I think it's way too easy for scammers to get burn phones or blocks of cell phone numbers, then discard them and go for another round.

On the bit where the call appears to come from your own area code and exchange, if you ever tried to return that call (DO NOT) you will probably see the phone number appear as 111111111 or some such. In that case, they simply managed to 'spoof' the caller ID, but in many cases, the Call Protect App still identifies them as "Telemarketer".

I have to wonder how successful it can be for them to harass people like that then trick them into buying something to make it worthwhile --- apparently, there are quite a number of dupes on the planet. (There's a fool born every minute?)

Sparko
11-19-2018, 08:36 AM
I registered my cell way back when that first became an option, then renewed it after 5 years (which was required at that time), but, yeah, didn't seem to help much. I think it's way too easy for scammers to get burn phones or blocks of cell phone numbers, then discard them and go for another round.

On the bit where the call appears to come from your own area code and exchange, if you ever tried to return that call (DO NOT) you will probably see the phone number appear as 111111111 or some such. In that case, they simply managed to 'spoof' the caller ID, but in many cases, the Call Protect App still identifies them as "Telemarketer".

I have to wonder how successful it can be for them to harass people like that then trick them into buying something to make it worthwhile --- apparently, there are quite a number of dupes on the planet. (There's a fool born every minute?)

You can report any telemarketers who call you after you are on the do not call list here:

https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/#crnt&panel1-1

Of course with the call spoofing I have no idea how much good it will do, unless they can check with the phone company records and get the real number somehow. If they catch a violation they are charged a $10K fine for each call.

I have no idea why phone companies even allow call spoofing. They have to know where the call is originating in order to even complete the call. So they know the real number but allow the caller to spoof the Caller ID display. I think the government should sue the phone companies to make them stop that.

rogue06
11-19-2018, 08:40 AM
Yes, anybody who had not done that needs to do it.... but be sure to use the correct URL - there are some scam sites out there.

https://www.donotcall.gov/
I've been registered since June 29, 2003 but still get at least a couple calls every day.

Cow Poke
11-19-2018, 08:42 AM
You can report any telemarketers who call you after you are on the do not call list here:

https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/#crnt&panel1-1

Of course with the call spoofing I have no idea how much good it will do, unless they can check with the phone company records and get the real number somehow. If they catch a violation they are charged a $10K fine for each call.

I have no idea why phone companies even allow call spoofing. They have to know where the call is originating in order to even complete the call. So they know the real number but allow the caller to spoof the Caller ID display. I think the government should sue the phone companies to make them stop that.

I know for a fact that my Magic Jack phone numbers can be set up with my own Caller ID, so I could call your phone and have it show up as "Sparko Answer" or whatever I want! I'm sure there are other phone apps that can do likewise.

Littlejoe
11-19-2018, 08:47 AM
I downloaded and installed Hiya per Sparko's recommendation. So far (been less that 24 hours) not a single spam call...fingers crossed.

Sparko
11-19-2018, 11:16 AM
I downloaded and installed Hiya per Sparko's recommendation. So far (been less that 24 hours) not a single spam call...fingers crossed.

They seem to come in spurts. Some days nothing and then bam! 6 or 7 in an hour. Hiya seems to block most of them as long as you have it set to do so, otherwise it lets them through with a warning that it could be spam

Cow Poke
03-19-2019, 10:48 AM
So, I was getting a BUNCH of scam calls (I've had this same number since Moses was a boy scout) and even though they get identified as spam, they still show up on my phone.

Just for grins, I decided to try a free month of the $3.99 service (upsell on the free app Call Protect) and it gives you greater control - it can automatically route unknown calls, or suspected spam calls, to voicemail.

Just a little bit ago, I got....

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and I never heard a thing. :smug: Those ones were auto-blocked - a few others were sent directly to voice mail hail.

Sparko
03-19-2019, 11:11 AM
So, I was getting a BUNCH of scam calls (I've had this same number since Moses was a boy scout) and even though they get identified as spam, they still show up on my phone.

Just for grins, I decided to try a free month of the $3.99 service (upsell on the free app Call Protect) and it gives you greater control - it can automatically route unknown calls, or suspected spam calls, to voicemail.

Just a little bit ago, I got....

35764

and I never heard a thing. :smug: Those ones were auto-blocked - a few others were sent directly to voice mail hail.

Hiya does that for free.

KingsGambit
03-19-2019, 11:12 AM
When I recently replaced my phone (with a $25 model, no less), I started noticing that my new phone would warn me that unfamiliar numbers had been previously reported as spammers.

I'm a bit creeped out by number recognition technology, though. One time at work, a random customer came up to me and asked me for help finding a random passage. I called him so I could get back to him after I looked for it. When I did, it displayed on his phone as "KingsGambit Post Office". Obviously one of my co-workers must have saved my number as that, and it somehow got saved worldwide as that. Creepy.

I know the standard advice is not to pick up unfamiliar numbers, but when you're actively job searching, the risk of hanging up on an interview trumps that.

Cow Poke
03-19-2019, 11:19 AM
When I recently replaced my phone (with a $25 model, no less), I started noticing that my new phone would warn me that unfamiliar numbers had been previously reported as spammers.

I'm a bit creeped out by number recognition technology, though. One time at work, a random customer came up to me and asked me for help finding a random passage. I called him so I could get back to him after I looked for it. When I did, it displayed on his phone as "KingsGambit Post Office". Obviously one of my co-workers must have saved my number as that, and it somehow got saved worldwide as that. Creepy.


Hnmmm... that's weird.


I know the standard advice is not to pick up unfamiliar numbers, but when you're actively job searching, the risk of hanging up on an interview trumps that.

Yeah, that's why I like the ability to automatically send them to voice mail hail, instead of simply blocking all but the well known "bad guys".

Cow Poke
03-19-2019, 11:20 AM
Hiya does that for free.

Yes, this is Hiya, or licensed from them. Does the FREE version do that?

Sparko
03-19-2019, 11:33 AM
Yes, this is Hiya, or licensed from them. Does the FREE version do that?

just checked. It will block calls on its list. I guess it doesnt do the voice mail thing. I was wrong about that.

Cow Poke
03-19-2019, 11:47 AM
just checked. It will block calls on its list. I guess it doesnt do the voice mail thing. I was wrong about that.

OK, so maybe it also has a paid version that adds those features.

Christianbookworm
03-19-2019, 02:15 PM
I've gotten calls that claim to be from a job agency but hang up when I press for details... :noid:

Cow Poke
03-19-2019, 02:43 PM
I've gotten calls that claim to be from a job agency but hang up when I press for details... :noid:

They may be "harvesting" your phone number - making sure it's really somebody --- everything I see says NEVER push any of the buttons when you answer a robo-call. :noid:

Christianbookworm
03-19-2019, 02:52 PM
They may be "harvesting" your phone number - making sure it's really somebody --- everything I see says NEVER push any of the buttons when you answer a robo-call. :noid:

It's a real person though. Robocalls will hang up because I don't say anything

Cow Poke
03-19-2019, 03:00 PM
It's a real person though. Robocalls will hang up because I don't say anything

OH... I thought you meant a robocall, where they say "press 2 for more info, or press 7 to be placed on our no-call list".

sorry

Christianbookworm
03-19-2019, 03:06 PM
Then again, it can be hard to tell these days...

Sparko
03-20-2019, 07:10 AM
have you guys heard of the new scam going around called "virtual kidnapping?" Its freaking scary.

https://www.wthr.com/article/im-not-playing-around-virtual-kidnapping-scam-hits-indiana
'I'm not playing around': Virtual kidnapping scam hits Indiana

NOBLESVILLE (WTHR) — Mark Walker is a private investigator, so he is very familiar with scams and how to avoid them.

But the Noblesville father said the phone call he received last Monday is unlike any hoax he’s ever heard of.

“I looked down and it was my daughter, so I answered the phone," he said. "The person on the other end identified themselves as having my daughter tied up and demanded I listen to him very carefully. He said ‘I’m not playing around,' demanded that I go to Walmart and purchase a MoneyGram and send it to him or that he was going to kill my daughter.”

Walker was stunned by what he heard as the caller continued to shout instructions.

“He said 'If you call the police I’m going to kill her,’ and he told me to go to my car,” Walker recalled. "You panic. He's calling me from her phone, so you're thinking this person's taken her and taken her phone, and he's calling me from her contact list and demanding ransom.”

Minutes later, unaware of what was taking place with his father, Walker's son got a similar phone call.

"On my phone it comes up as my dad and a picture of my dad, and so I answered. Immediately the guy is yelling," Eli Walker told WTHR.

The caller claimed he had kidnapped Walker and was now calling his son for ransom.

“He said he had a gun to his head, not to text anyone, not to call anyone; if I don't do exactly what he says, he's going to shoot him,” Eli said.

The Walkers were both victims of a scam called virtual kidnapping, a terrifying hoax that relies on deception and technology to trick unsuspecting victims into paying a ransom.

“It sounded real,” said Eli. “It’s definitely scary.”

“The caller made it seem really real because he was just carrying on, irate, threatening, using profanities,” his father agreed. “I don't think people are ready for that type of violent call.”
How the scam works

According to the FBI, virtual kidnapping is a coercion scheme to extort ransom payments from victims who are tricked into believing that a loved one has been kidnapped or is in imminent danger.

Scam artists pressure their victims to pay ransom demands quickly before the hoax can be discovered. They rely on shocking threats and prefer to spend as little time as possible negotiating with victims.

The FBI is familiar with the crime, which has grown in popularity in the south and southwestern parts of the United States. But FBI supervisory special agent Doug Kasper told 13 Investigates this is the first time the crime has been reported to federal agents in central Indiana.

“It was just a matter of time before it comes here,” Kasper said. "It’s alarming. When you see that caller ID and a picture of your son or daughter pops up, that’s tough. That’s next level sophistication.”

The ability of scammers to “spoof” someone else’s phone number makes the scheme more realistic and dangerous. Spoofing occurs when a caller deliberately falsifies the information transmitted to your caller ID, disguising their true identity and making it appear the call is coming from someone else. Virtual kidnappers use stolen contact lists and troll the internet to find personal contact information about you and your family through social media and online search tools.

“The perpetrators of this crime, they keep getting better and better and using more and more sophisticated techniques to make themselves more believable,” Kasper said.

In the Walker case, the angry caller had names and phone numbers but did not appear to know relationships.

“He kept saying 'I’ve got Rachel. You know her! Don’t you? You know her!’ Walker said. “I think he was wanting me to identify her as my daughter, but I didn’t do that. I asked to speak to her and he said 'No, only after you send the money.'"

Foiling the scheme

To bust the scam, the FBI recommends quickly reaching out to your loved one who’s allegedly been kidnapped to see if you can verify they are safe. If possible, stay on the line with the caller while quietly asking someone else to call the alleged kidnap victim. If no one else is available to make that call, discreetly text the victim to see if you can get a reply. Once verifying their safety, hang up with the caller.

If you are not able to contact the alleged kidnapping victim, the FBI says you should request “proof of life” and “proof of possession” that could verify the caller is telling the truth. Ask to speak with the kidnap victim. Ask for a photo showing the victim in captivity. Ask the caller a question that he would not know without getting the answer from the victim, such as the name of a relative’s pet. If the call is a hoax, the caller will resist all attempts to provide this type of proof.

If you are contacted by someone claiming to have kidnapped a loved one, Kasper said the most important tip is to remain calm.

“As hard as it must seem, the first thing you need to do is control your emotions. Just buy yourself time and don't give in to demands,” he explained.

That's exactly what the Walkers did.

Eli remained nearly silent during his scam call while he texted his mother to confirm if his father was safe.

Walker asked his wife to contact their daughter, who said she was picking her children up from school – not tied up and kidnapped by a stranger.

“At that point and time, I knew it was a scam so I hung up on him,” Walk said. “But now I know how parents whose kids disappear feel. You panic. You’re at their mercy, in a way. You’re kind of kidnapped, as well.”

Christianbookworm
03-20-2019, 02:32 PM
And another reason to have one's facebook profile on private mode!

Sparko
07-09-2019, 12:50 PM
So the FCC just passed some regulations (https://www.engadget.com/2019/06/06/fcc-lets-carriers-block-robocalls-by-default/)allowing carriers to automatically block robocalls.

And apparently AT&T is running with it.



AT&T will automatically block fraud calls for new customers
Existing subscribers will have to wait.



AT&T is making quick use of FCC rules explicitly allowing carriers to block robocalls by default. The network will start automatically blocking fraud calls (and issuing suspected spam call alerts) for new phone customers as a matter course, at no extra charge. You'll have to opt out if you don't want the company to screen calls this way. Existing customers, meanwhile, will see the feature automatically reach their accounts in the "coming months."

If you like the capabilities, you can turn it on right now either by downloading the AT&T Call Protect app or enabling it through your myAT&T account settings.

https://www.engadget.com/2019/07/09/att-automatically-blocks-fraud-calls/

Sparko
07-09-2019, 01:04 PM
Verizon has something similar:

https://www.verizon.com/about/news/verizon-offers-new-ways-battle-robocalls