That’s not your neighbor calling

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When your phone rings and it looks like a local call, you may be more likely to answer. Scammers count on this and can easily fake caller ID numbers. They even can match the first six digits of your own number, which is called “neighbor spoofing.” The urge to answer can be tough to resist, since you might worry it’s a neighbor who needs help, or the school nurse.

If you see a number like this on your caller ID, remember that it could be faked. Letting it go to voicemail is one option. If you do pick up and don’t recognize the caller — hang up.

But what else can you do? Call blocking services that block or flag unwanted calls can help. These services include mobile apps, features built into your mobile phone, cloud-based services, call-blocking devices, or services provided by your phone service carrier. Some are free and others cost money.

You also can register your number with the Do Not Call Registry. The Do Not Call Registry is designed to stop sales calls from legitimate companies, so it won’t stop calls from scammers. But it could make it easier for you to spot scam calls. If a company is ignoring the Registry, there’s a good chance it’s a scam.

You also can help by reporting unwanted calls. We take the phone numbers you report and release them to the public each business day. This helps phone carriers and other partners that are working on call blocking solutions. Your reports also help law enforcement identify the people behind illegal calls.

Comments

We get almost a dozen calls a day from faked caller IDs. It's time to take a more proactive approach, and LEGALLY REQUIRE phone companies to authenticate callers. The problem won't be fixed until it's the corporations' problem instead of the consumers' problem.

I am in total agreement of this statement. Let's see ATT, Verizon, Sprint and ALL phone companies hold this responsibility. I'm fed up!! Consumers are willing to help find a solution, but I have yet to hear that one single company has tried to do anything.

Exactly! The phone companies need to stop this nuisance caalling! I'm not making any money having a phone line but the phone company is as well as the scammertrying tho make money off of us. And we are supposed to jump through hoops!! BS!

I get this everyday almost and it’s two or three numbers ata time! I always block them since not one single number looks legitimate. Is there a way to report multiple numbers? I’ve written them all down.

Reporting these scam numbers that are being used by spammers would be a huge headache for the “real person” the number actually belongs to. We get several every day and have looked the numbers up. Most if not all of the spoofed numbers are legitimate business, home or cell phone numbers. I’ve even gotten them that they appear to be my own number. Not sure that the link in this article to report these numbers is the solution in the case of them appearing to be a local caller.

This is a terrific program! Always relevant, easy to read asset for consumers. Thanks!

Why is spoofing caller ID allowed in the first place? What use is it, if we can't trust it? I don't ever even hear any discussions of why this can't be stopped. If it can't be completely fixed, it should at least be possible to have a caller-reputation system similar to what exists in email with sites like spamhaus.

The FTC collects the phone numbers that people complain about and release them each business day. This helps telecommunications carriers and other industry partners that are working on call blocking solutions. The call blocking tools rely on blacklists, which are databases of phone numbers that have been reported as the source of illegal calls.

View the open government sets of information.

This is the list that phone carriers use when you request they block “robocalls” from your phone. You will still get robocalls from legitimate sources such as doctor office appointment reminders or calls from your credit card or bank fraud alert line. At this point in time, it is the best solution available to us until regulations or laws change in favor of consumers, instead of companies, for once,

Doctors and other medical providers SHOULD NOT USE robocalls or no caller ID......Period. If there is no caller ID or an Unknown Name displaying I don't answer.

i agree there is no legitimate reason to allow
spoofed calls period. along with it being harassing it could cause trouble for the legitimate holder of that number. I just got 4 spoofed calls in my same small town all in about 90 minutes

We must be among the few people who still have an answering machine and not caller ID. We never pick up the phone, rather we wait and see if people start to leave a message to see who it is. We get many many calls who do not leave a message and can only assume they are all scammers!

Every day I get calls from two numbers, I think maybe my internet phone provider eliminates the phone message but I still receive the call on voice message without any audible content often several a day. The calls come from 866 729 2722 and 707 205 3356. The silent calls last about 8 seconds and are annoying.

I agree with you. I simply don't answer my LAN line. If it's someone I know, THEY know to starting talking or I won't pickup. It's so damn annoying. Those slime bags change their number randomly so you really can't track.

My wife and I both get these calls and we are on the do not call list, we block the number but they just change the number and call again. Its really annoying and we wish we could stop it.

I'm contemplating an air horn if it's a person on the otherend.

The Do Not Call Registry is a waste of time and resources, since robocallers ignore it. Our Lawmakers are in collusion with them.

I've received two spoofed calls that appeared to be from my local prefix. I've called the numbers back to let the legitimate owners know that someone is spoofing their number, and suggest they contact Centurylink to notify them, and see if Centurylink can and will do anything about it. Not likely, I suppose. I get multiple calls each day from other spoofed numbers, or 'Out of Area' - there's got to be a way to stop this.

There are only two things that you can do with these calls. Use your phone provider's call blocking system and then a Nomorobo service to battle the rest. These both are working for me now. It is sad that these spam callers have figured out ways of getting beyond the blockings. It may take time, but I believe the spam garbage will eventually die down and go away for good when they realize they are getting nowhere.

revieved a call from "Alice" saying that I qualified for lower rates on my Visa card (uhm...I don't have a Visa card). I hung up as soon as "Alice" told me to press 1 and if I did not respond, my card would be terminated - these crooks are getting nastier!

do not call list is a joke - plus I cant block every local number - I have kids and coaches and teachers that may be calling me that I cannot be blocking - how about catching and stopping these guys, now there is a solution.

I agree. It could create jobs, too, such as law enforcement, computer and phone technology and support staff

I get these calls every day. I do not answer any of them..

Way to go, Ron A. Congratulations for figuring this out instead of asking the Government to spend more money needlessly. I mostly do the same but sometime I like to screw with them, waisting their time. I love the siding sales calls. After I let them go on about their product and ask them to answer a few stupid questions, I will say "by the way how do you attach the siding to the brick covering on my house".

P.S. We don't need the FTC to become another NSA.

I block every call I do not recognize, if they do not leave a call back # they do not know me! If the same bogus # calls back and it is blocked it rings once; several do not call again. My original # is unlisted.

If you have a business, you MUST answer the phone. You must put up with the never-ending unsolicited calls.

This telephone abuse must stop. Enormous fines, mandatory community service, I don't really care, so long as the punishment is HUGE. I want this to be priority number one.

Most of these calls originate in foreign countries, not subject to U.S. law or punishment. The only real solution is technological: forcing phone companies to require all callers to show ACTUAL, TRUE origin phone numbers and company names, as I explain and suggestion above, and holding the phone companies accountable if they allow applications to be used to subvert this. They can easily tell calls originating internationally. Even better, require all calls to show origin numbers that can receive a call back on, not dummy numbers. This would require the government to pass a law that benefits CONSUMERS, NOT COMPANIES, for once.

We never answer the phone. Every call goes to voice mail. We are on the do not call list, it’s a joke. We get so many calls everyday. I started reporting them. That’s such a pain, it’s easier to just let it ring.

The solution to spam calls is the same solution to junk emails. If all outgoing calls cost the caller...say, five cents...and all outgoing emails cost the sender a penny, I believe that would eliminate the problem overnight. I'm quite willing to pay both of those amounts.

My answering machine is full daily with these calls. Some times it is only 1 call. Nothing on the message but fills my machine blocking any real messages i may be waiting on.

i got a call from 5086440040 they told me i took a pay day loan and im in a lot of trouble is this a scame or not and should i pay

well now I know the Do Not Call Registry is useless! these scammers and places like Marriott Hotels that call and the people who call me by my first name and act like they're friends are still able to get through!

I get these calls all day long and I am totally feed up! If you call the number back a recording tells you it is no longer in service. Makes me think phone companies see them the numbers....who knows!

I never answer unless I see the name on my landline phone or see the name on my T.V. screen. If I don't reconize.. then I ignore the call or set my ans.machine on...calls will not be answered..

The "Do not call registry " is a joke!!

Every legitimate business should be mandated and regulated to use Caller ID.....no exceptions. While this may not guarantee spoofing it will help. On DO NOT CALL list & still get UNKNOWN NAME callers, can't block the out-of-state number with AT&T and I am not answering from an out-of-state number I am not familiar with. Why not have a function that the customer to input only those numbers they will accept calls from. We should all be concerned with Identify Theft with these kinds of numbers.

I got a call from my husband's cellphone and it showed his caller ID so I answered the call but it was one of those robocalls that I have already blocked. I called my cellphone carrier and they just wrote a report and gave me a case number. It is so very frustrating.

I think the carriers are selling phone numbers and also the DMV and other govt. agencies to make a certain amount of money from each name they provide.These govt. agencies should get big fines.

For 3 months I’ve gotten calls daily or several times a week on my Spectrum lan line from Lewisburg, OH, each call has 937 583 and then every call has the last 4 numbers changed so in reporting these numbers it’s impossible for my phone provider to block. I asked Spectrum if they could do a block of any call from Leeisburg as it is a small town but Spectrum says they couldn’t do that! Why not? I have been harassed with calls all times sometimes waking me up in the morning. I too am fed up not to mention Veronica or Rachel from Cardholder services who call, I got one this week and pressed 1 to speak to a real person. Told them they better not call me again or I’m reporting them, hung up on me. That was from a local number. What to do?

Consumer Need: A Sense of Mindfulness on Consumer Thought & Concern      Note that the article presumes wrongly, omitting essentially important information and, at the same time, it is misleading. The article provides, in part: ....      You also can register your number with the Do Not Call Registry. [   http:// www.donotcall.gov /             ] The Do Not Call Registry is designed to stop sales calls from legitimate companies, so it won’t stop calls from scammers. But it could make it easier for you to spot scam calls. If a company is ignoring the Registry, there’s a good chance it’s a scam.      You also can help by reporting unwanted calls. [           http://complaints.donotcall.gov/ complaint/complaintcheck.aspx       ]We take the phone numbers you report and release them to the public each business day. This helps phone carriers and other partners that are working on call blocking solutions. Your reports also help law enforcement identify the people behind illegal calls.      Upon reading the above, The Do Not Call Registry does'nt cover scammers, and anyone who has called their number or visited their site already knows you can file a complaint with them too. Shifting to the paragraph that follows, one should have some mindfulness the consumer is often still searching for essential help because scammers are'nt covered in the preceding paragraph on the Do Not Call Registry. Perhaps in hope to some degree, positive thinking, a consumer can almost naturally perceive the underlying link to "reporting unwanted calls", is to a form of reporting other than the Do Not Call Registry. Too often, the results are inevitable: unfortunate wasted effort, in consumers making no progress and discovering they're wrong.

What do I do when people are spoofing my number? I get calls asking me why I called someone, but I never called that person!

I keep getting calls all day/night from UMASS MEMORIAL, as I block the number they call back with a different number. Now they are using numbers of people I KNOW THAT CALL ME so I have to answer thinking it's a friend or family !!!!!!!!

The frustrating part is that everyone (including FTC) tell you options many of which cost victims more money and are likely not to work when enforcement of the do-not-call registry would ....

It is easy to say, "Just ignore the call." I have to look at the phone to know that it is *another* spoof call. I get multiple calls a day on my cell phone, and have begun receiving them on my home phone, too. It is a huge time waster. It is a constant irritant. We need a national solution.

I started answering "Madison County Criminal Justice Department, Officer Dooly speaking. I know we can't stop these vulture calls but the scam calls have dropped from 15 a day to about 2 a week.

I believe carriers could do a lot more in seeking out these offenders. Don't provide them service.

This is how spyware and malware is inserted into your cell phone, also voicemail spies gain access to your phone just by your answering. Do NOT answer calls from unknown sources. Once someone "gets into" your phone, it is very difficult to remove them and near impossible to remove yourself from remote surveillance systems. Also do not post your cell phone number or home address on any social media sites, public, private, or otherwise.

I keep getting calls from this home improvement company from local 864 numbers and you're right when you call the person back they have no clue. So I've started telling each one of the Home Improvement guys that called me that my house burnt down and there's no need for improvements right now until it's rebuilt and even then it would be new and shouldn't need any improvements. But they insist that I may need some home improvements and I finally have to hang up on them. It's like they don't understand anything past the scripted information they read.

I've started a "campaign".... Instead of blocking the number with an app I will call the number with my ID blocked. And then inform the true owner of the problem. After a brief conversation explaining the situation they will call their service provider and complain.

We as consumers have to start with our carriers/service providers and by complaining in large numbers put THEM on the spot to stop this annoying scammer behavior. The thing is the providers have the technology and the means to stop this before the call even reaches you. Here's why... you get a call matching your area code and prefix, it has name in the caller ID. That caller ID is provided by the carrier who services (and bills you) that number. Their "system" is able to determine where the call originated, internally from their system or EXTERNALLY.

So don't be apathetic and ignore or block the number. Call the number back (especially if there was a caller ID with a name) via a different phone (and block the ID with *67) and kindly, very kindly inform who ever answers of what just happened.

Every person I've spoken with has been appreciative and says they'll be calling their carrier to complain.

I'm getting calls from neighbors saying I call them and hang up. So someone is neighbor spoofing using my phone number, which is infuriating. Is there anything that can be done to trace these calls and end this?

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