If you’ve gotten at least one robocall to your phone in the last 24 hours you’re not alone. The number of scam calls that people receive is at an all-time high. In 2018 alone 48 billion robocalls were placed by phone in the United States. But one state is getting bombarded more than any other. If you ever do get a call that you’re suspicious about, never give your social security number over the phone.
Why robocalls have gotten so bad
Robocalls increased by 56.8 percent from 2017 to 2018. Why, you ask? Telephone technology has advanced, making it easy for basically anyone to send out a mass amount of robocalls. “It’s become very easy and cheap to make an enormous number of calls, to the point where you don’t even need technical expertise,” Alex Quilici, YouMail’s CEO told Consumer Reports. “If I wanted to pick a borough in New York City and hit every person with a voicemail telling them to go visit some website, I can do it for a couple of thousand bucks.”
It has also become much more difficult to identify a robocall using your caller ID. You might see a number with a local area code and think it’s an important call, but when you pick it up it’s a recording. This trick that scammers use to alter the number that appears on your caller ID is called “call spoofing”. Make sure you know about these phone call scams that could steal your money.
The area with the most robocalls
According to a report by YouMail, Texas takes first place for the U.S. state with the most robocalls. In March of 2019, the state got an estimated total of 601,406,400 calls. That’s just in one month! California came in second with 539,114,200 calls and Florida in third with 387,279,300. Texas took the top spot for every month in 2019 so far as well as for all of 2018.
What you can do to prevent them
Unfortunately, preventing them altogether is extremely difficult. The massive increase in the number of robocalls makes it virtually impossible for telephone companies and government regulators to stop scammers because they’re always a step ahead. Call blocking services have been created, but since new suspicious numbers are always popping up it’s hard to keep the list of blocked numbers updated. Therefore, even if you sign up for services like Nomorobo, a call-blocking app, you might still get robocalls.
There is hope for the future though: a new bill was introduced to Congress earlier this year which will make it easier for the Federal Communications Commission to issue intentional robocalling violations and increase the fines given for them. If you’re wondering why you are constantly getting spam calls, this is how telemarketers keep getting your number.