Unwanted phone calls, spam calls or robocalls… whatever you call them, they are a major problem for many businesses. Not only are they used in attempts to steal your personal information and make you a victim of fraud, but they could lose you valuable business by using your phone lines when you could be speaking to potential customers instead.
Spam calls are a particularly big issue in the US, with over $46 billion robocalls being placed in the year 2018. With the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) previously predicting that over half of calls being placed in 2019 would be robocalls, it was announced in June of that year that the FCC would be taking steps to make it easier for carriers to stop spammy automated calls.
Using algorithms and network scanning, the regulator will detect and block spam calls in the same way that emails are checked for spammy content. Currently, some phone carriers offer blocking functions, but often, users need to opt-in to take advantage of this feature. However, with these new rules being approved by the FCC, telecom operators can now make blocking spammy calls the default option, and leading cellular carriers AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile will also be able to offer customers the option to block calls from numbers they haven’t approved.
Although these new rules won’t block every unwanted call from getting through to your business, this is still good news for helping you to reduce the risk of you or your employees falling victim to phishing calls which are designed to trick you into handing over your personal information (such as usernames, passwords and credit card details) by pretending to be another company.
If you’re still worried about your business calling victim to spam calls and robocalls, don’t worry as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) also offers the following advice on blocking unwanted calls:
One of the easiest ways to block unwanted calls to your mobile phone or cell phone is by downloading a call blocking app. A number of these can be found in the app store on your device, and they give you the ability to take actions such as block calls based on the geographical location or area code they are coming from and create blacklists of numbers you want to block.
Many modern mobile phones also give you the option to block calls from specific numbers.
if your business uses traditional landline phones, then you can opt to install a call blocking device. This is a small box you can attach to your phone, and many use blacklists to stop unwanted calls. However, although some use a blacklist data, some require you to create your own blacklist.
Because a VOIP telephone system place and receives calls over the internet, blocking calls can be done by an internet-based call blocking service. The FTC recommends asking your carrier to recommend the best ones, or searching for reviews online. These can enable you to choose for your unwanted calls to be stopped, ring silently or go straight to a separate voicemail.
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