In-Depth Guide On How To Stop Robocalls And Block Numbers On Your Mobile Device
Imagine a life – your life – without robocalls. You’ve probably been getting so many for so long that doing so is surprisingly difficult. The number of robocalls made each day is staggering, with billions going out each month. It doesn’t have to be this way.
Many of the robocalls you receive are legal, and some are helpful (like that reminder from the clinic), but far, far too many are a nuisance, if not outright dangerous. Some more common robocall scams can leave you seriously out of pocket or worse.
What’s worse than getting an unexpectedly colossal phone bill or being scammed out of a few hundred dollars? Having your accounts compromised, debts racked up in your name, or your identity is stolen, for a start.
You can deal with robocalls reactively, by blocking numbers, or proactively, by getting your name and number off of the databases of the people and companies responsible for the robocalls.
The proactive approach will also drastically reduce the number of spam emails, targeted junk mail, and scam SMSs you receive. The people behind all these nuisances need to get your personal information from somewhere, which means you can cut them off at the source.
How To Stop Robocalls Right Now
There are two main things you can do to stop or at least drastically reduce the number of robocalls you get right now. One doesn’t work well, and the other comes at a steep cost. First, here’s how you can block individual numbers on Android and iOS:
How To Block Known Numbers On Mobile Devices (Android & iPhone)
- Open the Phone app and tap on the “call history” tab.
- Find the number from which you received a robocall.
- Tap on the number and then on “block” in the menu that appears.
- Open the Phone app and tap “Recents.”
- Find the number from which you received a nuisance robocall.
- Tap on the blue information icon to the right of the number.
- Scroll down and tap the button “Block this caller.”
- Tap on “block contact” in the pop-up message that appears.
This will only make a difference if you keep getting calls from the same number. Robocalls often come from spoofed numbers that get switched up often, so this method will only work in rare cases and for a while. There’s a more catch-all option, but use it with caution:
How To Block All Unknown Numbers From Getting Through On Mobile Devices
- Open the Phone app and tap on the three dots in the top right corner.
- Select “settings” from the drop-down menu and tap “Blocked numbers.”
- Toggle the switch next to “unknown.”
- Open the Settings app and then tap on “Phone.”
- Scroll down and toggle “silence unknown callers.”
These settings will make it so calls from numbers not on your contact list can’t get through. This method will work well for most robocalls, but it’ll also send legitimate calls from unknown numbers straight to your voicemail.
This can get very old quickly: think of all the important calls you get from unknown numbers. Whether it’s a mechanic calling to let you know your car’s ready, your bank calling to confirm a payment, or a clinic calling to discuss your lab results.
How To Stop Robocalls Long-term And At A Minimal Cost
The great thing about all the methods above is that they work, insofar as they do work, immediately. A few taps and swipes on your phone, and you get instant effects. The problem is that blocking individual numbers is a losing game, and blocking all unknown numbers can be a worse cure than the disease.
The more innovative approach is to get your name, number, and other personal information out of circulation among the spammers and scammers behind the robocalls. This can seem impossible, but the thing is, these people aren’t scouring the internet for your details; they’re going out and buying personal data in bulk.
Their suppliers often specialize in crawling and scraping the internet for personal information, packaging it for sale, and making a profit on the open market. These companies, called data brokers, are a natural data source for those looking to spam you with robocalls.
If you have doubts that your personal information is doing the rounds online, type your full name into your favorite search engine. Do the same thing with your mailing address, email address, and phone number. The people search sites are just the tip of the data broker iceberg.
The problem is that each data broker has their own opt-out procedure, and they are not interested in making the process any easier than it legally has to be. Cobbling together a list of likely suspects and patiently going through each data broker’s opt-out procedure would take an estimated 304 hours. But here are the good news.
Here Is How To Do It
That’s where an automated personal information removal service like Incogni comes in. Incogni will algorithmically figure out who’s most likely to deal with your data and then send out wave after wave of opt-out requests. It follows each data broker’s preferred procedure and will even deal with rejection appeals on your behalf.
For just $6.49 a month with a yearly subscription, Incogni will get and keep your personal information out of data brokers’ hands. When a robocaller eventually updates their database from the data brokers’, your details won’t be there – no need to block unknown numbers once this effect kicks in. Join below or keep reading.
The Many Side Benefits Of Automated Data Removal
Entrusting the removal of your personal information to a service like Incogni has many benefits beyond just receiving fewer robocalls. Remember that these data brokers aren’t just selling your information to other companies and scammers. They often make it available to the public through people’s search sites.
This means anyone who wants to see your arrest record, court records, financial information, or property records can do so with just a few keystrokes and clicks, no hoodie required. Incogni removes your data from 180+ data brokers, including 60+ significant people search sites.
Keeping your personal information out of circulation like this reduces your chances of getting scammed, stalked, and stealing your identity. It also puts you back in control of what potential employers, creditors, insurers, and even dates can know about you.
Getting fewer robocalls is nice, but you can gain so much more by refusing to participate in data brokers’ data-collection schemes. Incogni restarts the whole opt-out process every three months to ensure you can hold onto those benefits as long as you like.
Subscribe to Incogni for just $6.49 per month (that’s 50% off with a yearly subscription). Incogni does all the legwork for you, from creating a shortlist of likely suspects to sending out wave after wave of opt-out requests. It’ll also handle further interactions with the data brokers, including rejection appeals.
How To Report Online Scammers
Let your close family and online friends how to stop robocalls. Feel free to share this page if it was helpful. Meanwhile, you can report scammers and any other suspicious activity to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) using the portal below:
How To Protect Yourself More
If you want to be amongst the first to receive emails about the most notorious scams on a weekly basis, subscribe to our Scam Detector newsletter. You will receive periodic emails from us with insightful tips. That will include how to prevent fraud and information about the newest tools you can use to fight crime.
Meanwhile, feel free to educate yourself with some other Amazon fraud-related articles. They are listed under this paragraph, so that you know how to stay safe online. Last but not least, if you have any bad experiences, make sure to use the comments section below to expose other scammers.
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