Stop the madness of SPAM calls

FCC screenThe avalanche started with a phone call from an unknown Oklahoma City number at 8:30 am. The next followed a few minutes later from Denmark, Wisconsin. Then Alex, OK; Luther, OK; Wynnewood, OK; Oklahoma City again (and again); an unknown location; Binger, OK; and on to Colfax, Iowa.

Before the day ended, a total of 17 calls from unknown numbers reached my phone.

But they didn’t reach me.

Monday was just a typical day of robocalls –SPAM calls — from shysters and scammers desperately trying to get me to pick up on the call. They spoof both area codes and local phone numbers to entice people to answer.

Then they either make a gimmicky sales pitch or a false warning of dire consequences if you don’t make a payment IMMEDIATELY.

There are federal laws on the books to allegedly prevent these SPAM calls, but they seem to have little no impact. Consumers can also have their number placed on a no-call list. Good luck with that.

Fortunately, I downloaded an app from AT&T called Call Protect, which directs any call from an unfamiliar number to voicemail. So, my phone doesn’t ring, and I only receive a text notification of the call if I choose to.

I figure if it’s a truly important call, they will leave a voicemail. So, if my air conditioner guy calls, he’ll leave a message and I will call him back ASAP.

voicemail screen

Sometimes, the SPAMMERs do leave voicemails. Typically, it’s the same exact message from a different person. “This is Alexa from the office of the state…” is how most of them start out.

SPAM calls are unrelenting, with waves of them coming in day after day. I’m mostly unbothered by them, but I fear for folks like the elderly who still have landlines or don’t have cell phone call blockers and feel compelled to engage the SPAMMERS when they pick up on a call.

I want to shout “DON’T PICK UP!” to my relatives, but it’s not my decision.

In the meantime, the calls continue to come in, one after another. Obviously, SPAMMING and scamming must be is a lucrative field.

My plea is for the best and brightest programmers out there to create a real solution to halt this problem. Call Protect is a start, but there has to be a real answer.

SPAM calls need to end.

***

Here are some tips I found on the FCC website that might be helpful.

Stips screen

Published by

jimstafford

I'm an Oklahoma City-based freelance writer with interests in Oklahoma startup community, Apple Inc, OKC Thunder & Texas Rangers.

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