Getting Calls from Random Numbers and Curious Who They Are?

Year 2020 was a unique year that hit everyone by surprise. No one was expecting for something like COVID-19 to happen. That virus was something that put a lot of strain on people’s health and there was even a moment in time when businesses were forced to close down temporarily. This brought a lot of hardships upon many families. During those moments, we were relying on as much assistance as we could receive whether it is through stimulus checks from the government or voluntary organizations that could help supply emergency items. Thank goodness for their support!

Unfortunately, not everyone has good intentions. On top of the pandemic, there are also organizations or even individuals who are aware of this hardship upon families and actually use it to their advantage for their own gain. There are even businesses who (quite stubbornly) try to get people to purchase/upgrade their products and services. I like to refer to them as “spammers”.

What Calls Have I Been Receiving

These days I have been receiving A LOT of calls from numbers I do not recognize. The calls I happen to pick up can include some type of internet or cable service offer/upgrade, grants that can pay off debt, offer for my home, hidden bills, dial # to be removed from list, details concerning a package a few months back, or something wrong with my account (bank, apple, etc.). Some numbers just even hang up on me the moment I pick up.

Not too long after picking up just one or two of those calls, the number of calls by them also happened to increase within a short period. Sometimes for the same exact service being offered (cable TV), but just from different regions. It can get quite annoying and frustrating at times.

What I Did About Those Calls from Random Numbers

The last thing you want to do is to pick up the call and indirectly let the caller know that you are a real number. What I started doing is ignoring numbers and calls that I do not recognize. Eventually the spammers might start to think that the number is not in service anymore and may stop.

Sometimes, I also wonder if I am accidentally ignoring important phone calls. Is it worth not picking up from all unknown numbers? There is no exact answer, but here are a few tricks you can try to figure out who the numbers belong to.

How to Find Out Who Those Callers Are?

Instead of calling them right away, what I did was I started to Google those numbers. Sometimes, Google will provide you with enough information to tell you who the number is from. You might even find others who also received a call from the same exact number. At times, there might even be a recording of the message left by the spammers (recorded by your fellow victims of spam callers).

Other times, the contact number may still be a mystery and there just may not be enough information on it. It could potentially just be that you actually might be one of the first people to receive calls from such a number.

But if you are still really curious who the caller might be, there is a method you can utilize.

A Trick You Can Utilize

A friend once showed me a trick to call people anonymously. If you press *67 before the full number, you can actually call someone and they will receive a call from you as an “unknown caller”. Your number will actually not be visible to them.

For example, if the number was (800) 123-4567, instead of dialing 1 in front of that, you will dial:

*67 (800) 123-4567

My friend meant it to be a prank call trick, but I think this technique can be utilized for other more beneficial purposes. You can test and practice this with a family’s or friend’s phone (just let them know beforehand and not actually prank them).

You can also try apps like Spy Dialer.

Recommendations

Here are some recommendations on how to deal with calls from random numbers:

  • Avoid picking up numbers that you do not recognize and that you have NO prior affiliation with (interviews, business deals, etc.)
    • If you are already expecting a call from a certain area, then when that area calls, then you should pick it up.
      • Try to obtain their number beforehand and save their contact info (or just remember it)
  • If you ever receive a call to “press a number to be removed from a list”, DO NOT do it.
    • This gives the message that you are a real person. You might not receive a call from that number specifically anymore, but you will from other numbers.
  • Use the *67 trick to call them anonymously (but ONLY if you absolutely must know)
    • Some individuals might do the one ring call method and immediately leave you with a missed call. If you call them back, it can cost you $15 to $30 (from international fees and minute charges).
    • Therefore, avoid picking up from these area codes:
      • 268, 272, 284, 345, 441, 473, 649, 664, 767, 809, 829, 849, 876 (just to name a few)
  • Avoid creating an automatic voice mail message to respond to people
    • It can feel more polite to do that especially with those whom you know but again, that also makes you a real person to spammers (even if you don’t pick up) and they will continue to keep calling
  • Once you detect that a number is a “spam caller”, you can either block them or save their contact as “spammer” (or any other name to your liking)
  • Lastly, if the call is important enough, the caller should know well enough to leave a voicemail and a call back number
    • You can be sure that this is a genuine caller so please call them back.

Know that there is no perfect solution, so follow the recommendations above and ALWAYS use your best judgment.

Summary

Since COVID-19 has hit the world pretty hard, some people are looking for any opportunities available to help them with their situation. Unfortunately, there are also those with hidden and ulterior motives who are aware of that and will use that to their advantage.

Always be mindful of the area code you are receiving calls from and make sure you have prior affiliations with the location before picking up. Use the recommendations above and also your best judgment when deciding to pick up. Best of luck to you!

Did you enjoy this life hack on how to determine who unknown callers are? Please leave a comment below!

16 thoughts on “Getting Calls from Random Numbers and Curious Who They Are?”

  1. This is really cool because I have been getting phone calls about how my car’s warranty has expired. I literally get them multiple times in a day and it’s always from different numbers so even if I block the caller, I’ll get the call from a different number with the same message. Sometimes they even leave voice messages. Thank you for this article, it’ll help me dead with these scammers

    Reply
    • Hello there, Misael! I’ve been getting a lot of those car warranty expiration calls too, but they stopped for me. Hopefully with these strategies, they’ll stop for you too!

      Reply
  2. Hey Mike, 

    A good hack for masking your number. I too have been getting calls from random numbers. Usually, it is Eve wanting to make sure I have good health insurance. I do not understand these calls. I guess they figure with persistence they will get someone to accidentally push a button or come across someone who really needs good life insurance. I don’t know if it is a scam or if they actually have an offer to make. Not going to try, if I did need something, I will go find it.

    I have heard of the *67 before but have never used it. I do get a lot of calls from numbers with the same prefix as mine. I have learned to screen those calls but as you said, you don’t know for sure if it is not a legitimate call or not. Using my phone for work, I get calls from all over the country and you never know until you answer. 

    Thanks for the idea, I may even use it to call a few friends and “prank” them a little!

    Chad

    Reply
    • Hello there Chad! Ahh, some calls are legit because I get them from my internet service provider asking to upgrade  but they are very persistent about it and I don’t need the addition of a different service from what I already have. They’ve reached out to me with at least 10 different numbers all over the country. One thing for sure, know what you want and do not give in to their services. I sometimes prank call the spammers too.

      Reply
  3. What an interesting article this is. I was curious if it related to UK Numbers, but from reading the post it appears to be only for the US, but none the less, no matter where in the world you are, then you can apply your countries version of these hacks to mystery phone numbers.

    I certainly shall be, gven what I have read and though I don’t get many random calls, I do get some, especially if you make enquiries about for example trading or Forex, then you phone doesn’t stop ringing for days… Even when you say no

    Very useful tips though and I enjoyed reading the post

    Reply
    • Hello there, Dave! I think you are right in that the *67 code may only be for the US. I think you should still have google in the UK though so you can still use that to check and you are probably right that there may be a similar code in your area too.

      Reply
  4. Thanks for this post. I agree with you that getting calls from unknown numbers can be very annoying especially when the callers tries to exploit you.

    In my country, there’s an app we use to discover whoever the caller is while they’re calling. The app is called Truecaller. Just download the app and configure it; you’ll be able to know who your caller is and decide whether to pick the call or not.

    Reply
    • Hello there, Jude! Thank you for your comment! I actually looked up the app you suggested. I was surprised to see it in my country since it is made in Sweden and India. I’ll test it out and update this article with this app and my experiences on it.

      Reply
  5. Hey Mike. Very interesting article. With all what is happening from last year, covid, quarantine and all connected issues I’m starting to receive more and more weird calls. Some are just advertising but I’ve seen also more dangerous frauds from numbers around the world. We all need to be very careful, and google numbers before calling back. Also I love your *67 trick!

    Reply
    • Hello Cogito! It’s crazy what lengths people with selfish motives would go through just to take advantage of others especially during a time with the events that happened just last year. Fortunately, we too have tools we can use to combat it. Glad you loved the *67 trick too!

      Reply
  6. Unsolicited calls are an incredibly frustrating experience.  While I often have no sympathy for those who don’t leave a message, sometimes a local call or if I’m expecting a call, I do want to know who it is.  I have had the same experience as you with Googling the number, sometimes I can find out who it is or find out that others claim it’s a scam.  While I’m not ditching my voicemail, I do like the other suggestions you have here.  It never occurred to me why they ask me to press 1 to be removed.  No wonder it never works!  Thanks for the great info!

    Reply
    • Hello there, Cynthia! I am glad to hear you like these suggestions. I also agree that unsolicited calls are quite frustrating. I am starting to receive them again these days so I guess it’s time for me to put those hacks to use again.

      Reply
  7. I have been plagued by calls lately and I been mistakenly picking them up and answering them. Well, not anymore. Thanks! I wonder how these people get my number in the first place. Do you generally know how they get people’s numbers?

    I see on my phone I have a block and a report number. Any idea what report number does? Great article.

    Reply
    • Hello there, Dan! Hmm, to answer your question on how people get our numbers, sometimes I think that although some companies claim they won’t share your info with third parties, some might actually do (and this is illegal). They are probably only saying that just out of formality. Also, I think scammers sometimes do not know your number in the first place. What they do is call randomly generated numbers to see if it is a legit one. If someone responds on the other end, then that’s a giveaway that the number belongs to someone. Since this number is of value to them, they will most likely share it with others who are part of their team and plague that number with all kinds of “offers” to see what extra information or money they can get away with.

      Reporting numbers is a way for you to essentially report it to the higher-ups. They will try to do their best to check if that number that is calling you is truly a “spam” or “fraud”. If they do determine that the number that was calling you is truly a “spam” or “fraud”, that number will be made known, and this will help protect many others from that spam caller too.

      Reply
  8. Hi and thanks for sharing these excellent tips. I never thought in much depth about trying to avoid sending signals by how I responded to unwanted calls, letting them know I was a real person. I assumed they already knew I was a real person and I wouldn’t be able to pretend anything else. The one call I get literally all the time is someone trying to sell me an extended warranty on our car. There is one observation I would make, and one that I have no hesitation sharing with anyone who tries to turn hard-sell tactics onto me. That the intensity of the hard-sell pressure they are putting on me has a direct proportional relationship with the level of commission that the salesperson is receiving, and an inverse relationship with the benefit I would receive. Put in simple language, the harder the sell, the more the salesperson is getting paid and the more I am getting screwed. I like that *67 trick by the way. I seem to recall there are a whole host of little codes that telephone technicians know. This must be one of them. Thanks again and best regards, Andy

    Reply

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