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How to stop scam phone calls for good?

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Ian Parkin21/07/2020 12:48:58
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839 forum posts
202 photos

My mother is getting increased number of scammers targeting her by phone

shes 85 and in early stage dementia but still living alone succesfully

how can i stop the scammers getting through?

I have a vague thought that you can set up a pin number on the line so anyone who rings has to enter the pin for the call to go ahead.

or any other methods?

been searching the bt site but seems to have to set up a blacklist and add to that as nessasary which is too complicated for her.

or do we change her number and have her ex directory?

Graham Titman21/07/2020 12:58:21
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86 forum posts
10 photos

Hi Ian ask BT about a service they do called BT Call Guardian a friend uses it, you give them a list off numbers you want to get through but if the ladies voice does not recognise a number it hangs up on you.

Rod Renshaw21/07/2020 13:01:27
173 forum posts

I don't have a solution, but just for information, our home landline has "always" been ex-directory and we still get scam calls, so going ex-directory may not help much.

Rod

Adrian 221/07/2020 13:03:51
82 forum posts
19 photos

The call guardian lady asks callers to state their name , press # and wait to be connected, so scammers could still

potentially get through to your mum Ian.

Adrian.

old Al21/07/2020 13:31:05
172 forum posts

The call guardian is part of the phone. Buy a new phone with it.

Speedy Builder521/07/2020 14:10:09
2107 forum posts
146 photos

here in france, we get lots of 09 prefixed numbers. I can block all these on our Philips cordless phone which is attached to our internet router. I can also block specific numbers but can't remember just how many I can block. That has got rid of 80% of nuisance calls however it has blocked one friend that uses an 09 (Are these internet free charge numbers?).

Keith Wyles21/07/2020 14:12:57
35 forum posts

We bought a phone that has the ability to block calls. Have had no trouble since we bought it.

Ian Parkin21/07/2020 14:26:56
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839 forum posts
202 photos

Really i'd like to be able to block all calls except ones that we/she wants to get calls from

the scammers are upsetting for her now

i have a pair of call blocking cordless phones and loads still get through

she has 4 cordless and a fixed landline phone....so how do i get call blocking? is it hardware at home or at the exchange?

Martin Hamilton 121/07/2020 14:33:45
182 forum posts

We replaced our phones with BT Premium handsets @ £80 for 3 about 6 months ago due to constant scam calls, we had used all the usual methods that BT offered. But the scammers constantly found ways around these methods & BT said it was very difficult for them to stop these calls. Since we installed the BT premium handsets we have not had 1 single scam call in 6 months, i believe these phones use something called True Call which stops scammers calls coming through to your number, best 80 quid we ever spent for complete peace now re phones constantly ringing.

Dennis D21/07/2020 14:48:31
72 forum posts
2 photos

In the past I have used TPS **LINK** This blocked a lot of cold calls based in the UK but the foreign based ones sometimes slipped through. Your phone provider may have something to sign up with. I am with Sky and they have a screening service called Talk Shield which allows you to block numbers you don't want.

V8Eng21/07/2020 14:49:19
1474 forum posts
28 photos

We used to be with BT until recently and I always found it best to talk to them about possible services etc on the phone rather than using other methods.

I do not know what other providers are like (yet).

Edited for odd words.

Edited By V8Eng on 21/07/2020 14:52:32

Barrie Lever21/07/2020 14:50:54
688 forum posts
76 photos

Ian

Sounds like Martin has a good solution there.

I was going to suggest the following, change the number and go ex directory, then programme in the people who need to call your mother, this is unlikely to be more than 10 or 15 numbers.

When these people call she can see who is calling and should ignore any caller who is not on the list, it sounds like she could handle this.

This does not rely on any system keeping up with the scammers tricks as you/she are controlling the system.

An 85 year old lady does not need this type of hassle.

B.

Martin Hamilton 121/07/2020 15:30:42
182 forum posts

These scammers around the world are very clever & ahead of the curve, in the end the scammers number would come up on the phone as UK numbers when they were not. This is one reason why they got through & fooled the usual methods that phone company's offered usually for free to block calls. These numbers would come up as not recognised numbers when you tried to trace the number, they also constantly changed these numbers which is why BT could not keep up with blocking these numbers. I understand their true call technology has a way of not letting these calls through & the calls are diverted & binned somewhere. With True Call it lets your known numbers through straight away to you, numbers out side of this you get a call from BT to say who is calling & do you want the call. Up until now not one scammer has ever got through to even an announced call to us. We had over the years used all the other usual methods that you do to stop unwanted calls with nothing stopping them completely, it was a strange feeling when we first installed these phones where we were so used to the phone ringing constantly through out the day. You would be sitting waiting for the phone to ring where we were so used to the ringing all day off & on.

Gary Wooding21/07/2020 16:07:07
763 forum posts
196 photos

My TalkTalk account has a feature similar to the BT Call Guardian. Its free to use - you just have to request it to be switched on. Calls are intercepted by TalkTalk and if the number isn't on the whitelist the caller is asked to state their name, which is recorded. The call is then placed and the recipient is told who is calling by playing the recorded name. If you press 1 the call is accepted and the number is placed on a whitelist. If you press 2 the call is accepted but the number isn't added to the whitelist. If you press 3 the call is rejected and the number is placed on a blacklist.

Call;s from blacklisted numbers don't get through.

Since I've been using it I get almost no unwanted calls because scammers are reluctant to give their names.

It works well for me.

Gary Wooding21/07/2020 16:08:34
763 forum posts
196 photos

My TalkTalk account has a feature similar to the BT Call Guardian. Its free to use - you just have to request it to be switched on. Calls are intercepted by TalkTalk and if the number isn't on the whitelist the caller is asked to state their name, which is recorded. The call is then placed and the recipient is told who is calling by playing the recorded name. If you press 1 the call is accepted and the number is placed on a whitelist. If you press 2 the call is accepted but the number isn't added to the whitelist. If you press 3 the call is rejected and the number is placed on a blacklist.

Calls from blacklisted numbers don't get through.

Since I've been using it I get almost no unwanted calls because scammers are reluctant to give their names.

It works well for me.

SillyOldDuffer21/07/2020 16:53:01
Moderator
6325 forum posts
1387 photos

True Call looks good, but as Gary says look for the word 'whitelist' in a call blockers feature list.

I don't know why but most anti-spam systems are based on blacklists, where the provider and/or subscriber specifically block numbers after they've been identifed. Stable doors and horses come to mind. Easily circumvented and not user friendly, especially for persons not interested in getting to grips with 21st century technology.

Whitelists only allow calls from previously approved numbers, the disadvantage being someone has to type them all in, while withheld numbers may be legitimate. I failed to find anyone on Amazon selling a white-listing land-line call blocker at the moment but they do exist. Whitelisting apps widely available for smart-phones, but an elderly lady is unlikely to get on with one of those. Or me!

Dave

Brian Baker 121/07/2020 16:53:15
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134 forum posts
27 photos

Plus 1 for BT Call guardian, had it three years now, and using it we have blocked all overseas inbound calls, and it works like a charm.

martin perman21/07/2020 17:06:34
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1875 forum posts
78 photos

Ian,

+1 for call gaurdian also, my wife and I have had it since it appeared, if you load your favourite no's into the memory they will come through direct but if the number is not saved the ringer will have to do as requested, automatic dialled systems cant get through, as others have said since weve had it the phone has gone very quiet except for the calls we want.

You can see who has rung, even those who havent got through.

Martin P

Oven Man21/07/2020 17:27:46
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70 forum posts
8 photos

Ian

+1 for Tuecall. We have the stand alone Truecall unit and it has certainly proved its worth. For a small annual sum you can access it via the internet which means you could control it from your home without having to visit. You can set star callers who come through automatically and zap callers you definitely don't want. All the others have to give a name or number. The odd one gets through but it certainly blocks the majority.

Peter

Ed Duffner21/07/2020 18:20:48
810 forum posts
91 photos

I can't understand why the call blocking software or embedded firmware in phones can't be somehow incorporated at the exchange. Makes one wonder, whether having to buy additional hardware with these features is a scam itself.

Ideally and in my humble opinion, any call that isn't traceable to source, including geographical location should not be allowed to connect to any other phone or device.

Ed.

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