Call filtering products

In the last couple of weeks, we've started getting one or two junk calls a day (sigh), so I'm thinking of getting a call filtering product, e.g., a TrueCall.
Can anyone recommend any such? What about BT Call Protect?
(And yes, Bob, thanks, but I know you have an Asterix for this, but that's overkill for what I want.)
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On Thu, 15 Jun 2017 09:56:57 +0000, Huge wrote:

I wouldn't have dreamed of mentioning a small Gaul.
Or even a PBX.
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It happens that The Natural Philosopher formulated :

I used to do that, it gave very limited success - they mostly carried on for another earfull.
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I've got TrueCall and it certainly stops those spam calls. I have the unit were you can enter and edit your 'allowed' list via their website, which allows you copy and paste your phone book into it. Included for the first year but charged for afterwards, IIRC. Not sure I could be bothered entering all numbers manually.
The snag with it is it may put off some genuine calls that you've not got the number for in your system. Like perhaps a delivery driver, where leaving a message won't do.
But all in all I'm extremely pleased with it. I disabled it to allow in a call I was expecting, and got 4 spam calls in a few hours.
It is an extra bit of kit to have lying around, and when I get round to tidying the wiring to it I might well include a bypass switch. Easier than doing it via the keypad on the phone.
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On 15/06/2017 11:57, Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

I have a DECT phone that has trucall built in, works really well. Its set so someone can say their name and the phone will ring so you can decide to answer or not. None of these silent calls or the ones that dial and put you through to a person work as they don't get the message about how to operate it.
If anyone wants to know what it is I will say but not to that huge prick.
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As I understand it, any numbers you want to allow straight in have to be entered manually? Not sure I could be bothered with that. I keep one central list up to date here - and it's easy to use that to update the Truecall I have.
One day, someone will produce an integrated landline/mobile system with decent spam blocking. I'll be at the front of the queue for that - unless it costs silly money.
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On 15/06/2017 12:49, Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

You can either use the caller ID or add it to the callers list. The list is shared by all the handsets so you only need to do it once.
I suppose that if you have hundreds of contcts it might be easier to keep a list on a PC.

They exist but they have monthly fees.
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dennis@home formulated the question :

Those people I ring are entered in to my BT 8500's callbook and get straight through, everyone else gets the chance to say their name, press a button and get through - nuisance callers never do this and so never get through.
In the many months since I installed it, I have never heard a complaint from anyone, that they couldn't get through due to the filter.
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On 15/06/2017 19:39, Harry Bloomfield wrote:

I have the BT8500 and only use the number withheld and international blocking filters[1] and have had only 1 junk call get through in the past 4 weeks. There hasn't been a problem with my local doctors surgery or hospital leaving messages on the answerphone.
[1] I also have around a dozen numbers in a VIP white-list that overrides any filtering and with an added benefit of displaying the callers name on the handsets.
You have to remember that these phones give a message to people phoning from a blocked number with a simple instruction on how to get through. Dialling robots don't understand the message and cold callers tend not to bother. Many cold callers actually just drop the line instantly on hearing a recorded message as their aim is to talk to a human and not the machine.
The phones display lights up (but is silent) when dealing with a blocked number so that I'm aware that I'm still getting around 3 junk calls per evening.
You need caller display activated from your phone supplier. With BT you can get this part for free for 12 months if you sign up to their privacy pack and enter a 12 month line rental agreement. After a year you can renew this again to get caller display free for another 12 months BUT you have to keep a record of the dates as BT will not remind you and default you to paying a monthly fee for the service as your contract expires.
http://bt.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/8098/~/all-about-bt-privacy-at-home
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On 16/06/2017 11:11, alan_m wrote:

BTW, For BT customers http://www.productsandservices.bt.com/products/home-products?s_intcid=con:help_upsell:phone#bt-home-phones
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On 15/06/2017 11:57, Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

I've also got a trueCAll stand-alone unit - and it has stopped all my junk calls dead!
It's designed to use with just one handset (or the base unit for a stack of Dect phones). I use mine with several wired handsets, and needed to do a bit of jiggery pokery in order to insert it between the master socket and my extension wiring. Most people from whom I wish to receive calls are 'plumbed in' and get straight through. It intercepts call from unknown, withheld or international numbers and asks the caller to identify themselves before ringing my phone. This puts off most junk callers, but genuine callers don't seem to be put off.
There are some BT-branded DECT phones which have trueCall technology built in. These are cheaper than the stand-alone unit but, in my view, are a bit less versatile. Worth looking at, anyway.
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I've got several DECT phones here (with different base stations) and not any corded types left in use. And the TrueCall cuts in quick enough to stop any of them ringing on spam calls, just plugged into an extension socket. It might well not with corded ones, though.
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Roger Mills wrote:

Roger, It sounds like I have a similar set up to you with 4 wired phones and 3 dect with answering m/c. Can you confirm on your set up that putting the Truecall upstream of all devices that you get correct operation please?
TIA Bob
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On 15/06/2017 14:39, Bob Minchin wrote:

Yes, indeed. I have 3 wired handsets and one DECT base unit which supports 3 DECT handsets. If trueCall knows the name of the caller, it sends it to the handsets to display.
One of my wired handsets has a built-in answering m/c but I've disabled that and just use trueCall's answering m/c feature. You may be able to use both together, but you'd need think carefully about which one you want to answer first.
I don't think it applies to you, but if you use 1571 as an answering service and have a phone which goes off-hook regularly to listen for a broken dial tone, that will upset trueCall - particularly its ability to 'call home' in order to do a weblink.
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Roger Mills wrote:

Thanks Roger
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I've had a true call for over a year and a half. This is the original Truecall VI for blind users. It is very good but there are some unexpected issues. Firstly, if friends or commonly ringing folk have withheld numbers, often local authorities health care etc, then they always have to say their name before the device rings your phones. some of these organisations seem reluctant to do this and put the phone down for whatever reason. Some pre recorded junk calls can leak through if they have a small gap after a few short words, as it thinks its a name. If they have a number you can block them of course. The first few weeks are when you need to put the wanted callers in the star list. they then get straight through without having to say their name. Most cold callers give up when asked for their names as time is money and they just move on to the next number. I've not had a live junk call since I've had the device. So really its up to you to decide whether people from places like companies and helth and council bodies are important callers for you as their response to call screeners seems pretty random. Of course both Sky and BT offer a built in system for free. BTs is on 1572, and has to be set up either online or via a freephone number. Most of these devices whether built in via the telephone exchange or as a box at home can record your calls like any answering machine but True call can also record all incoming and out going calls as well and if you buy a memory card this is a big number of hours. The administration of this can get very long winded, but if you need to have calls recorded and are disciplined enough to do manual deletions each week its not so bad. 60 hours sounds a long time but it can fill up and going through that lot could easily take several sessions. Of course the card can be read with software on a computer, but its still quite a slow process working through the files.
Some telephones also now have true call built into them, but these rely on sight, so for me they are not so useful. Note however that I have now started to get junk calls via my mobile. I guess its only a matter of time before this will be covered as well.
Brian
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Think it's because many large switchboards have outgoing only lines, which you can't easily find out the number of and put in your system.
My doctor's surgery seemed OK with Truecall, though.
The other one is a delivery driver phoning up to make sure you are in. Seems to defeat them. I turn mine off if expecting such a call.
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Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

    I have a perfect call filtering service provided by BT. The phone rings once and cuts off!
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I've been using the Plusnet Call Protect for a couple of weeks. I use the default blacklist of junk call numbers and have added a few more myself, which is quite easy to do, call 1572 and 'add last received number'. I allow calls with number withheld because there are a couple of those that I want to receive. I have barred international calls and received none (added my brother's number, he lives in Germany, to the VIP list so I won't find out if that works until Christmas.)
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