How to Stop Unwanted Spam Calls

Everyone knows the frustration of when you answer the phone only to find out that it's just another spam call. While lawmakers have passed legislation to curb these issues, spam and robocalls are still a common place. As a small business owner, who has limited time, you can't afford to spend time trying to figure out whether a call is a scam or not.

That's why we have compiled this a list of things you can do to help reduce the number of spam calls you receive.

  1. Manually block the number
  2. Register for the National Do Not Call Registry
  3. Report Spam
  4. Download an APP to block spam calls
  5. Check with your Carrier

1. Manually block the number


We all know that once a spammer or telemarketer gets ahold of your phone number, there will be no end to their calls in sight. Thats why instead of waiting for them to call you yet again, you can take matters into your own hands by blocking the number directly after they call you.

If you have an iPhone, you can go into the log of your recent calls and click on the small "i"  icon next to the number.


Once you click on this it will take you to the information page for that caller. At the bottom you will see a red button labeled "block this caller". Once you hit that button, you will no longer receive any communication from that number.

If you have an Android phone, to block a number you must navigate to your recent calls list and then tap and hold the number you wish to block. A menu will appear and will include an option to block calls from this number in the future (the exact button will vary by model).


2. Register for the National Do Not Call Registry


The National Do Not Call Registry is a database maintained by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that lists the telephone numbers of people that explicitly do not want to be contacted by telemarketers. You can follow these simple steps to put your number on the registry in less than five minutes.

  1. Go do donotcall.gov and click on the icon that says "register your phone." You can first check if your number is already in the registry. If not then you can click on the "Register Here" button.
  2. You will be prompted to enter up to 3 phone numbers that you wish to register as well as your email where further instructions will be sent.
  3. After submitting a request, check your email and you should see an email titled "Register"
  4. Click on the link sent in the email to confirm your registration. You will then be directed to a page where you can print out a confirmation that your number is now registered.

However, please note that there are certain exceptions to the National Do Not Call Registry such as calls from non-for-profits and political organizations.


3. Report Spam


If you have a bit more time on your hands and are interested in doing a service for others that are also annoyed by spam calls, you can report any unwanted calls to the National Do Not Call Registry. In order to report sales calls, your number must be in the registry for at least 31 days, though you can report a robot call (a call with a recorded message instead of a person) without having your number on the registry at all.


4. Download an APP to block spam calls

There are plenty of third-party apps available for download that specifically target robocalls and other spam. Here are a few of our top picks:

Free Options:

1. Truecaller

Truecaller focuses on blocking spam phone calls and text messages. The app works to identify incoming calls from unknown numbers based on numbers known for spamming. The app includes caller ID and also has an intelligent dialer feature that helps recognize when you're making or receiving calls from contacts outside your list. The basic version of the app is free, however it comes with advertisements. For $4.49/month or $29.99/year, you can get these ads removed as well as enjoy some additional features.


2. YouMail

YouMail blocks spam using visual voicemails, so that you can decide quickly who to block after a caller leaves a message. It also offers has some additional features such as the ability to join free conference calls and leave personal voicemail greetings. Signing up is free, but getting an upgraded plan can help cut out ads and unlock more premium features.


3. Hiya

Hiya can alert you of known spam callers and potential scammers based on a database of scammers. The app focuses on phone calls made with illegal or fraudulent intent as well as identifying numbers used for robocalls.

Hiya also allows you to search numbers in their app, so you can see if a particular number is suspect to fraud calls or spam. The basic version of the app is free, however to get more features, the app will costs $3.99/month, or $24.99/year.


Paid Options:

1. Nomorobo

Nomorobo blocks spam calls by comparing the number across a database of banned numbers. You have the option to send spam callers automatically to voicemail as well as the ability to block spam text messages. The mobile app costs $1.99/month, however for VoIP landlines its entirely free.


2. RoboKiller


RoboKiller helps block spam calls based on a database of known spammers. What makes them unique is their Answer Bots. The App can automatically answer spam calls and can detect voice patterns so that if a spammer changes their number to call you they will still remain blocked. You can also create your own bot responses to have some fun with spammers. The Android app is $2.99/month, while the iOS version is $3.99/month.


5. Check with your carrier

Your carrier may offer specific tools to help customers with vetting spam and robocalls calls. Here is a list of available resources from a few of the top carriers:


Verizon

Verizon Wireless offers their own spam filter service through the Call Filter app.  The free version offers spam detection, filtering, and includes a neighborhood spoofing filter as well. For more premium features such as caller ID, spam look up, or a spam risk meter you can upgrade to the Verizon Call Filter Plus plan for $2.99/month.

The app is available for download in the App Store.  and the Google Play. store.


AT&T:

If you currently use AT&T as your carrier, they provide a page with directions on how to block calls for various phones. AT&T also offers their own spam blocking app for iOS and Android called Call Protect. The basic version of AT&T Call Protect is free, however if you'd like additional features such as Caller ID or Reverse Number Lookup you will need to upgrade the plan for $3.99/month.


T-Mobile/Sprint:

T-Mobile offers a spam and robocall blocking phone app called ScamShield. However, the app is only available for postpaid T-Mobile customers. Scam Shield gives you anti-scam protection with features such as Scam ID, Scam Block, Spam Alerts and Caller ID. Potential spammers will show up with a warning to help you avoid taking the call. T-mobile's Scam Shield app also provides a proxy number option so you don't have to share you regular number. The app is available for both iOS and Android.

For $4.00 per month, you can also upgrade to a premium version with additional features such as voicemail to text and the ability to tag which calls go straight to voicemail.


If you are looking for a no effort solution to eliminate spam calls for your business, you can use the ProPhone App. The ProPhone App provides a dedicated business line on your existing phone that comes with spam protection. Our technology cross checks a massive directory of numbers associated with spam calls, alerting you of any potential risks. Spend less time on spam and more time on growing your business. Download the App and try it for free today.

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