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Managing Robocalls During the Holiday Season

October 23, 2017
By Mandi Nowitz - Web Editor


As the holiday season is quickly approaching, businesses are eager to start making consumers aware of promotions and new products. One tactic that is quite popular is robocalling, a form of automated telemarketing. Telemarketers give a long list of phone numbers to an autodialer, which then places thousands of calls automatically, effectively trying to determine which are active phone numbers and which are not.


Spoofing is also a trend mixed in with robocalling. Often, the shady telemarketers provide false caller ID information – to make it look like a familiar number is phoning, but it is a ploy to get the call answered. VoIP services have made spoofing quite easy, and once a receiver acknowledges the caller, the number is validated as legitimate and can be used to redistribute amongst agencies for profit and sales.

Robocalls happen all year, but they are more prevalent as holiday time approaches – sales pressure is higher, and consumers may have their guard down a bit more.

“Nine times out of ten those numbers aren’t valid numbers. If you tried to call them back it wouldn’t go anywhere,” said Tech Expert, Kent Meeker.

What if you have listed your number on the Do Not Call registry? First off, that takes 31 days to go into effect, and it still allows calls from charities, political organizations, and companies that you have done or are doing business with. The greater risk is that scammers and spoofers have no allegiance to the DNC registry.

Meeker wants to remind all who deal with robocallers that the VoIP provider is not responsible for these calls. “All they are doing is just routing it. They are not responsible for where the call is coming from.”  

So, what can be done to avoid or stop the unwanted holiday robocallers? First off, do not answer any calls from unknown numbers. By sending the call straight to voicemail, no information can be distributed. If you do choose to answer calls, avoid following prompts, answering questions, or providing any personal information.

Know with whom you are speaking and, if the call makes you feel uncomfortable, it is fine to hang up. Cell phones have apps to detect and block fake calls automatically. Even though they aren’t responsible for making the calls, contact the VoIP or cell phone provider, so patterns can be monitored. There is also the option of contacting the FCC (News - Alert) or donotcall.gov. Extreme measures, Meeker suggests, could be changing your number.

Beware this holiday season of robocallers. Some are trying to sell you goods while others want to scam you. 




Edited by Erik Linask



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