How To Stop Spam Calls And Take Back Your Peace Of Mind
Remember when the only unwanted calls we ever had to deal with came from telemarketers and bill collectors? Those were simpler, more peaceful times, before spam calls and robocalls grew into the epidemic they are today!
According to data collected by YouMail, U.S. consumers received around 50.3 billion robocalls in 2022. They’re a huge nuisance, and I’m betting that I’m not the only one who is interested in learning how to stop spam calls!
So I did some research and came up with the following list of 6 ways to help prevent spam calls, or at least reduce the frequency and volume of annoying calls coming in to your phone. These easy tips will arm you with the tools you need to stop spam calls and restore your sanity! :-)
6 Easy Ways To Block Spam Calls
1. Add Your Name To The ‘Do Not Call’ Registry
The FTC operates a National Do Not Call Registry, and it’s free to sign up. The Registry exists to inform sales companies and telemarketers that you don’t want to be called.
It is important to note that there are plenty of scammers and spammers that don’t care about the Registry, so registering your name and number won’t stop all annoying calls. However, it’s a great place to start if you’re receiving a lot of telemarketing calls!
2. Download An App
There are several smartphone apps you can download that can identify and block spam calls. Here are a few options:
- Hiya – Free on Android and iOS.
- RoboKiller – Free and paid options.
- Nomorobo – Free 14-day trial, then $1.99/month.
3. Get Help From Your Wireless Carrier
Most major phone carriers offer some sort of service to help keep spam calls at bay. Make sure you’re taking advantage of what your carrier has to offer!
- AT&T – The AT&T ActiveArmor app (available for Android and iOS) identifies suspected spam callers and gives you the option to block their numbers. Service available for free to all postpaid AT&T customers.
- Sprint – Now that Sprint is part of T-Mobile, the Sprint Call Screener app is now free to use! It displays the name of callers and flags robocalls and spam calls with a “threat level” to let you know how suspect the call is.
- T-Mobile – T-Mobile customers can download the free Scam Shield app to control anti-scam protections like Scam ID, Scam Block, and Caller ID.
- Verizon – Verizon offers their customers a free Call Filter app that detects and filters spam calls. You can upgrade to Call Filter Plus for more advanced features (like caller ID and a spam risk meter) for an additional fee.
4. Block Phone Numbers
Blocking a phone number can help reduce the amount of spam calls you receive, especially if you have gotten multiple unwanted calls from that number. Here’s a quick overview of how to block spam calls:
- On iPhone – Pull up your recent calls list and press the blue information icon next to the number you want to block. Scroll down and tap “Block this caller.”
- On Android – Go to your recent calls list and long press on the number you want to block. Find and select the “Block” option.
5. Don’t Engage
Engaging with a spam caller or robocall is often considered an indication of interest, and it could end up attracting more unwanted calls to your phone. Don’t answer calls from unknown numbers, but if you do answer one, hang up as quickly as possible.
If you receive a call with a prompt to press a certain button to stop receiving those calls, you’re likely better off just hanging up, as some scammers use this trick to identify potential targets.
Bonus iPhone Tip: If you press the side button on your iPhone when you have an incoming call, it will stop ringing and/or vibrating. If you press the side button twice, it will decline the call so you can keep using your phone.
6. Verify The Source
While the majority of unwanted calls are easy to identify, others can seem pretty legitimate! If you get a call from someone who claims to represent a company or government agency, hang up and call that company or agency’s customer service line directly to verify if the call was authentic.
Keep in mind that you’re much more likely to receive some sort of notification in the mail if a company or agency needs to contact you. And that’s especially true with anything related to making a payment!
Want Even More Smartphone Hacks?
- For even more clever hacks that can make your smartphone more useful and easier to use, check out the other posts in this series!
- Click here to explore the “iPhone Hacks” series archive.
Do you have any other tips to help prevent spam calls?