As technology becomes more advanced, so do robocalling tactics. Consumers have been reporting an increase in unwanted calls to cell phones, and a number of news outlets have reported that the Do Not Call registry has become less effective in recent years. This is largely due to new technologies that allow robocalls to get smarter with their strategy. For example, callers may use a different number with the same area code as yours to trick you into answering.
With a less effective Do Not Call list, consumers have turned to downloadable apps for their smartphones to seek relief from scams and robocalls. Here are four apps that may help you weed out illegitimate callers and finally put a stop to unwanted calls.
For $1.99 a month, RoboKiller claims it will reduce robocalls by 85% within 30 days. Rather than simply alerting you that an incoming call is spam, the app will actually prevent your phone from ringing. You can also curate your own personal blacklist of numbers in case there are specific people or companies that you don’t want to receive calls from.
The app was the winner of the FTC’s Robocalls Content in 2015 and has a 4.5 star rating in the App Store.
With Nomorobo, you can choose whether to display robocalls on the incoming call screen, or to have them sent directly to voicemail. It also won’t block important calls, like those that alert you to school closings, weather updates, or appointment reminders.
Nomorobo is free for landlines and costs $1.99 per month on iPhone. It’s not available for Android phones yet.
Hiya Caller ID & Block
Hiya claims that it protects tens of millions of users from robocalls across the globe. It’s available for both Android and iPhone, is free to download, and will alert you when a caller is suspected to be spam.
Their site also provides some helpful information on the most frequently used robocall area codes and phone numbers and the type of caller.
Call Blocker has more than 2 million numbers in its database of spam callers. You can also add your own numbers to the blocking list. Downloading the app is free, but subscribing to the database requires a yearly subscription fee of $9.99.
Know the TCPA
Smartphone apps aside, there are existing federal regulations against robocalls. The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was established to limit the use of these automatic dialing systems and to require these callers to receive consent from the consumer. If you continue to receive these calls after asking that they stop, you may be able to receive $500-$1500 per violating call.
This post should not be considered as an endorsement of any of the above companies.