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Frequent spam calls

Discussion in 'Telepests' started by Rinansay, Feb 13, 2017.

  1. Rinansay

    Rinansay Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    I’ve had my trueCall for several years now and have found it very useful. However, I’d begun to think that I could do without it since I was receiving so few dodgy calls.

    Recently, though, I’ve been plagued with large numbers of unsolicited calls. Originally I had my Unrecognised callers, Withheld numbers and Number unavailable calls set to Whisper since that seemed a sufficient safeguard, but I then started to receive quite frequent calls which consisted of recorded messages. Unfortunately the trueCall unit regarded these as responses to Whisper and so my phone would ring, which was somewhat irritating. I generally didn’t answer these calls, and if a number was given I zapped it, though if the calls were from withheld or unavailable numbers that wasn’t possible.

    It gradually became clear to me that zapping the numbers was a waste of time since the numbers were being spoofed anyway. For example, today I have so far had 9 calls, though the trueCall has prevented any of them from causing my phone to ring. One of them was a Number unavailable, one from a mobile phone, one where the trueCall didn’t suggest an exchange while the others purported to be from Strathaven, Rhyl, Dartford, Ipswich, Kyle and Cirencester. On other days the calls are mostly shown as Number withheld.

    On checking back I find that this has been going on since October. Initially I did tend to pick up the phone and listen to two or three seconds of the recorded message which was always the same voice saying something along the lines of, “Press 2 now to speak to a customer adviser.” I’d then zap the number if one was given.

    Around two or three weeks ago I decided to answer one of the calls by pressing 2 since I thought perhaps I might be able to find out which company was calling me and ask them to stop. I tried that two or three times but the calls just went dead and I never got an answer. However, what did happen was that the numbers of unsolicited calls increased from around two a day to seven or more.

    I’ve recently set my trueCall to react to Unrecognised callers, Withheld numbers and Number unavailable calls by playing a “Number unobtainable” tone in the hope that the caller might be led to believe that the line was dead, but so far that has had no effect on the numbers of calls. However, I don’t particularly like shutting down my phone to that extent, so maybe I should go back to Shield and whisper.

    Two questions:

    Is anyone else having a similar experience at the moment?

    Can anyone suggest a better way of dealing with these calls?
     
  2. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    I send them directly to messaging. It's annoying that I then have to clear the resulting recorded messages, but until trueCall provide us with a feature I requested ("key 4 if you want to leave a message"), there is no way around that.

    At least with this process a legitimate (but unrecognised) caller still gets the chance to reach me by leaving a message, even if they can't speak to me directly.
     
  3. Rinansay

    Rinansay Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    Thanks, Top Cat. I came to the same conclusion myself, and I've now given up on the "Play unobtainable tone" method and gone for the "Send to voicemail" option instead which is less drastic.

    I've had 14 such calls today, which is the most there have been in a day. Whichever business it is that's causing the hassle I have no idea why they keep on trying to phone me. Surely I and my trueCall unit must have made it quite clear to them that I want nothing to do with them, but still they persist, presumably thinking that eventually I'll relent when, of course, I would never for a moment consider dealing with such a dodgy crew of cold callers and number spoofers.
     
  4. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    Strange. Personally I've found the number of telepest calls drastically down not up.
     
  5. Rinansay

    Rinansay Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    That had been my experience too, until the last few months. I don't know where the calls originate, but since the numbers are obviously being spoofed I suppose they could come from anywhere in the world.

    I'm going to leave my trueCall off today, at least for a time, in order to see if the recorded messages give me any sort of clue as to who the caller might be. I did catch part of the recorded message yesterday when my trueCall let it through as a message left by the caller, and it included something like, "Press 9 to be removed from our files." However, judging by the way the business operates I have no confidence at all that that would work, and it might in fact just make things worse by confirming that my line was live.
     
  6. Top Cat

    Top Cat Administrator Staff Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Classic + Extra + Recorder
    Country:
    Englishman in Wales!
    Your comments lead me to check the logs, and it's still only a few a week incoming here. Curiously very few of them are robocalls, they disconnect when sent to answering rather than playing their recorded speil.
     
  7. Rinansay

    Rinansay Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    Since on the occasions when I've listened to part of the recorded message it has been identical, I think all of the calls I've been getting have been coming from the same source, and judging by the numbers of calls I've been receiving for several months now, that source would seem to be somewhat vindictive.

    I've had no calls so far today, but I should think that won't last.
     
  8. Moon Raker

    Moon Raker Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    My TC 'calls' log extract below shows a recent persistent spammer who has been trying (but failing, of course) to get through to me. At least two calls on the same day from a number which is probably spoofed and I reckon the 3rd (middle) call is from the same telepest but using a different spoofed CLI. Drill down onto the number via 'who called me' shows it logged as a telepest who wants to sell a call blocker! Ah, the irony.
    Code:
    10/03/17 09:14 02322322325 INTERNATIONAL 00:05 Call from an International caller / Play unobtainable tone / Hung up during screening
    
    10/03/17 12:20 004022 00:02 [Romania] Call from an International caller / Play unobtainable tone / Hung up during screening
    
    10/03/17 15:04 02322322325 INTERNATIONAL 00:04 Call from an International caller / Play unobtainable tone / Hung up during screening
     
  9. Rinansay

    Rinansay Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    The main spammer who was targeting me seems to have stopped — at least for the moment — though I'm still receiving a few calls with number unavailable or withheld. However, these are easily blocked by my trueCall.
     
  10. Moon Raker

    Moon Raker Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    My India-based spammer with the spoofed CLI is still at it - two more attempts so far this week - log extract is below. I just love trueCall!

    Code:
    15/03/17 15:06 02322322325 INTERNATIONAL 00:04 Call from an International caller / Play unobtainable tone / Hung up during screening
    
    16/03/17 07:43 02322322325 INTERNATIONAL 00:04 Call from an International caller / Play unobtainable tone / Hung up during screening
     
  11. Moon Raker

    Moon Raker Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    This telepest is not getting the message! Two further calls this week, one with CLI blanked and the other with a modified version of the previous spoofed number - nothing shows on 'who called me' drill down for that number (yet ....).
    Code:
    16/03/17 20:34 INTERNATIONAL 00:04 Call from an International caller / Play unobtainable tone / Hung up during screening
    
    17/03/17 07:47 02525252525 INTERNATIONAL 00:04 Call from an International caller / Play unobtainable tone / Hung up during screening
     
  12. C56441

    C56441 New Member

    trueCall Model:
    trueCall Call Blocker
    Country:
    UK
    For months I've been swamped with nuisance calls (and long term TPS registration and reporting many calls to ICO had no impact hence my acquiring TC Call Blocker). Nearly all my spam calls were robotic, mostly re 'boiler replacement' but a few re 'window replacement'. Initially the spammers had not done their research as I was being offered 'a free replacement gas boiler (for those on benefits) - couple of problems here: 1) I wasn't on benefits and 2) there's no mains gas in my area! The calls were usually coming from an 0844 number which changed every couple of weeks. More recently the message has been better-targeted by offering 'replacement Oil / LPG boilers' and caller id shows a different number with every call, usually 1 digit short which, I understand, is designed to overcome BT's own call-blocker.

    I've never used the robotic call options for 'more info' or 'to be removed from list' as to respond in any way makes one a candidate for 'suckers lists' on basis that spammers now know they are calling a live number; even so have received up to 10 calls per day followed by 'quiet days', say around 50 calls per month on average. In recent weeks have started to receive calls from fake BT and fake Microsoft call centres (info from reverse number look-up as I don't answer where caller id is not on my contacts list). My first impressions are that the new device will totally defeat these pests as far as my landline is concerned. On a wider basis I've little faith in effective action by the ICO / Telecoms Industry / Regulator especially given trend towards spamming operations moving offshore and / or using fake numbers. The best way to defeat these pests is to attack the profitability of their operations and use of call blockers or simply never answering unsolicited calls will render operations unprofitable...but only once sufficient numbers adopt these measures.
     

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