If there’s one thing we can all agree on, it’s this: spam calls are the worst. Whether you’re in a meeting, on the road, or at the gym, nothing is more annoying than getting interrupted by an unsolicited call from a telemarketer wanting to sell you something.
If you think spam calls are bad now, just wait until next year. A new report estimates that in 2019 around 50 percent of all calls in the United States will be spam. That is up nearly four percent from last year.
This boom in the number of spam calls is partly attributed to a marketing method known as “Neighborhood Spoofing.” This is when telemarketers use technology to hide their own number in exchange for one with the spam recipient’s area code, tricking them into picking up the phone. Even with an increased number of spam calls from Neighborhood Spoofing, there are still many ways you can mitigate the issue.
You can register your number here in the National Do Not Call Registry. While this won’t stop all spammers from attempting to contact you, it will filter out large numbers of telemarketers from polluting your call history. Furthermore, most major phone carriers are already way ahead of the game, with downloadable apps that identify and block spam callers on your mobile line. These services are free through AT&T and T-Mobile, but Sprint and Verizon Wireless charge you a monthly fee.
If you have a Samsung Galaxy S/Note or a Google Pixel/Pixel 2, you’re already covered. With these there are built-in features that alert you to spam calls as soon as your phone starts ringing. If the above options don’t appeal to you, you could also download a call-blocking app for your phone. We recommend either TrueCaller or Hiya. Both of which are available for free on iOS and Android. TrueCaller and Hiya notify users of spam calls before they pick up. This allows users to block unwanted numbers so they won’t be bothered in the future.
Finally, you could just roll with the old-fashioned method of blocking each spam number individually. This can definitely be tedious. It’s not an ideal solution, especially with a multitude of other options out there. Whatever you choose, there’s no guarantee of stopping spam calls forever. It is nice to know though, that there are some options that’ll make this annoyance just a little bit smaller.