John Oliver on robocalls


He looks at this problem that has got so bad that I now never answer the phone if the number is unrecognized, though even there it is possible to be spoofed.

Comments

  1. Siya says

    I use nomorobo://www.nomorobo.com
    It cuts off almost all robo calls after one ring. This has the added benefit of preventing the calls from going to the answering machine (when I’m not home) and leaving a ton of messages which I used to have to go through. Best thing after sliced bread is how I consider it

  2. says

    Today I got a scam call on my mobile, using my own number. That was a first.

    The whole situation is bullshit. The phone companies sell S7 access to companies spoofing calls; they know what those companies are doing and why they want the access -- they’d just rather have the spoofers as customers than their other paying customers. We don’t pay enough is all. Meanwhile everyone pretends the situation is unregulatable so they can continue to sell the access.

  3. says

    Someone needs to implement a captcha for phones. “Hello robot, this is Marcus’ defensive robot. Since you’re a first time caller please press the keys on your handset to play the opening notes of NIN ‘Hurt’. (Pause) No, sorry. OK one more try: tell me who’s your daddy now?”

  4. lochaber says

    Marcus Ranum @2
    I’ve never gotten one from my own number, but I’ve heard about it hear and there. I get plenty from my exchange (? I think that’s the term, for the three numbers after the area code?), so I would assume if they are using some sort of random number generator, then about 1 in 1,000 people would get robocalled by their own number.
    Which may not be great odds, but considering how often we all get robocalled, I imagine most of us at least know someone who has been robocalled by their own #.

    I pretty much never answer the phone unless it’s someone I know, and just check the voicemail later. usually it’s the standard stuff about credit card rates and such. In the past year or two, I started receiving a lot in a foreign language (one of the Chinese languages, I believe?). I live in the San Francisco Bay area, and there are a lot of people of Chinese ethnicity here. Not sure how accurate it is, but I heard claims that a lot of these robocalls were threatening deportment over immigration status or taxes or some shit, and claimed to be from the Chinese embassy, asking the receiver to pay to avert/clear up whatever they were being threatened with.

    It just struck me as especially predatory, and I can’t help but think scams like this wouldn’t be as effective without our current administration. 🙁

  5. johnson catman says

    lochaber @4: After the three number exchange, there are four digits, which would be 10,000 numbers instead of 1000.
    .

    Not sure how accurate it is, but I heard claims that a lot of these robocalls were threatening deportment over immigration status or taxes or some shit, and claimed to be from the Chinese embassy, asking the receiver to pay to avert/clear up whatever they were being threatened with.

    After what happened to Khashoggi when he was instructed to appear at the Saudi embassy, I would be very wary if I was called into the embassy of my previous home country.

  6. Mano Singham says

    lochaber @#4,

    One robocaller got lucky with me. The number and name that showed up on my phone was that of a friend who lives nearby so I picked up the phone. And quickly hung up again when I discovered the truth.