How to stop those unwanted robocalls

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- If you own a cell phone, we all deal with them, unwanted calls, sometimes illegal, spoofed robocalls. It's the number one consumer complaint and the top priority at the FCC.

In February, they spiked, hitting 4.6 billion nationwide, an increase of more than 15% in just one month, but we have just the ticket to stop the spoofs.

Guilia Porter is the Vice President of Marketing at TelTech where she leads the marketing strategy for RoboKiller, a call diverting app, which, for a small monthly fee, allows you to stop and block robocalls and telemarketers.

Porter says if your phone rings and you don't recognize the number, simply don't pick up, but if you do and the recording or caller asks you to hit a button to stop getting calls, don't. Scammers use this trick to ID potential targets.

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"A lotof times scammers are trying to get you to press something and that puts you on a list as a live person and a scammer will follow up with an elaborate phone scam," Porter said.

Also, never respond to any questions by a robocall, especially those you answer by saying 'yes.'

"Always be careful when saying 'yes' or 'no.' That could be connecting you to a scammer or opting in to receive something you never consented to receive," Porter said.

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You might want to consider downloading a third-party call blocking app or exploring the options your service provider offers, but, be aware, some of these apps charge a fee.

Many cell phones offer a 'whitelisting' tool that allows calls only from numbers in your contact list, but that there are downsides.

"That was like bring a sledgehammer to a solution that needs a hammer. People were like missing calls from their doctor, CVS Pharmacy and other calls they need to receive," Porter said.


Remember just because your caller ID shows a local number doesn't mean it's a local caller. It could be a robocaller spoofing a local area code and never volunteer information.

If the caller is legit, they have your information already and don't need your birthday or account number.

For more information, check the FCC's guide to stopping unwanted robocalls and text messages.

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