An ex who can’t take a hint, telemarketers, and spoofing scammers are all reasons to Number Blocking. When you’ve had enough, block the number. However? Here are OS and carrier-specific steps.
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Putting your number in the National Do Not Call Registry will limit telemarketing calls. On DoNotCall.gov, you can register up to three numbers and check if they’re there (Opens in a new window). Your registration requires an email address. To register a phone, contact 1-888-382-1222 (TTY: 1-866-290-4236)
Your phone number will be added to the FTC’s list within 24 hours, but it may take 31 days for sales calls to stop. Complain if telemarketers persist (Opens in a new window).
RoboKiller and Nomorobo stop robocalls and telemarketers (and even deploy answer bots that pester them). Do Not Respond stops text spammers.
Expect unsolicited calls anyway. Robocalls are common despite FCC efforts to reduce them (Opens in a new window). Here are some other ways to reduce phone calls while you wait.
Under iOS 13 and later, you can silence unrecognised callers in Settings > Phone. Callers not in your contacts list, Siri Suggestions, or recent outgoing calls go to voicemail. You’ll be notified afterward.
You can also add non-contact text messages to a different list. Filter unknown senders in Settings > Messages.
Open Phone and tap Recent to block a caller. Tap the Info icon (a circle with a lowercase letter I Tap Block Caller. Confirm and that number’s calls will go to voicemail.
Settings > Phone > Blocked Contacts lets you blacklist contacts. Tap Add New. Select the contacts you want to block. Settings > Messages > Blocked Contacts > Add New.
To block a text, press the number or name at the top of the screen to reveal three options: audio, FaceTime, and Info. Info. Tap Info again, then Block this Caller.
Go to FaceTime, find your last discussion with them, and select the Info icon. You’ll see a screen with call details and options; select Block this Caller. Go to Settings > FaceTime > Blocked Contacts to block contacts. Tap Add New and pick the names to block.
Signs you’ve been blocked include calls going straight to voicemail, never seeing Delivered under your messages, and green text when messaging iOS users. (These things can also happen if the person you’re calling doesn’t have a connection.) But if you’re still not getting through, well…)
Android lets phone makers customise, so banning a number may differ by device.
To number blocking , tap the phone number and scroll to the bottom or tap the ellipsis button and select Block Number.
Some Android phones offer Call Screen, which lets Google Assistant screen calls from strangers. Toggle Spam > Call Screen in Settings. Under Unknown Call Settings, select callers to screen (spam, possible fake numbers, and so on). Google Assistant tells these callers you’re using a call screener and asks why they’re calling. You can choose to read a real-time transcript of the chat.
Wireless carriers offer call-blocking apps. AT&T has iOS and Android Call Protect (available from the AT&T Mobile Security app, as well). A Plus edition with a VPN, personal ID monitor, and theft alarms costs $3.99 a month (if you use an Android device).
Verizon offers paid options to prevent scammers and certain numbers. A premium version of T-Scam Mobile’s Shield app (formerly Name ID) costs $4 per line each month.
All carriers (including landline providers) must now use STIR/SHAKEN protocols to authenticate legitimate calls (Opens in a new window). This technique should reduce legitimate-looking faked calls, but it won’t eliminate them.