My elderly neighbour was complaining about nuisance calls. I said I'd
register them with the Telephone Preference Service, but I find
they're already registered. I presume this means that the bulk of
their nuisance calls are coming from overseas, although I'm also with
the TPI and get very few, just the occasional broadband cut-off scam,
as do my neighbours.
Is there an alternative or addition to the TPS that also blocks
overseas nuisance calls?
Hmm...thanks. They did say they'd got a phone that was supposed to
stop nuisance calls, but that it didn't seem to be working. I suspect
they don't understand how to use or set it up. I'll investigate
You need to set up a white list and shunt all unknown callers to the
answerphone. That way one doesn’t miss anything really important. In my
experience nuisance callers (except automated machines) never bother
My call blocking phone has an annoying beep every 15/30 seconds if there
is a answerphone message that hasn't been played.
My phone is set for call monitoring so I can hear what is being recorded
on the answerphone so I can, if I wish, pick up the phone to speak to
the caller directly rather than let them finish on the answerphone
I agree with other posters - 99% cold callers hang up on getting the
outgoing answerphone message and don't leave any message on the
Answerphones can cause their own problems.
We received a couple of calls while we were out, but no message was
left. The next day a message was left. The person calling had been
reluctant to leave a message telling us that a relative had died and
hung on to try and talk to use directly, but eventually decided that
they had to leave one. That meant we didn't find out about the death
until 17:30 on Friday evening and needed to be in Sligo by 11:15 on
Saturday morning! The last flight that night was 20:30 and we couldn't
get organised, get our children to my parents, get to the airport and
through security in time and the earliest the next morning was too late
for us to pick up a hire car and get right across Ireland. In the end we
had to egt organised, leave at 22:00, drive to Holyhead, cross to
Dublin, drive to Sligo (arriving with 15 minutes to spare), attend the
funeral service, the burial and the reception afterwards, then
immediately leave for Belfast, cross to Stranraer and drive back to
If we hadn't had an answerphone, they'd likely have asked a family
member and got one of our mobile numbers, getting the info to us earlier.
That’s one of the advantages of using a mobile phone for everything,
you can see the number that called you with a missed call and call
them back and with modern unlimited calls and texts and MMSs
to any landline or mobile in the country, there is no reason not
to call them back in case it was important and they chose not
to leave a message for whatever reason.
I don’t get any spam calls on my mobile currently. Remains
to be seen how that will change over time but the mobile
has good spam blocking capability in various ways too
and allows you to flag particular numbers that you allow
to call you twice in a row and have the phone ring even
if you have the phone set to do not disturb as well.
I have thought of that, but the majority of answerphone messages are not
so urgent and I'd not want people to be phoning at work or while
driving. I'd prefer that people just left a message, but unfortunately
people don't like to use answerphones to let you know that someone is
dead or dying.
Most don’t, because that is so annoying. Mine just has a blinking led.
Sure, but that only works if you are near the phone.
Problem is that plenty of valid callers also don’t bother
to say anything when they encounter an answer phone.
I hardly ever leave a message myself because most of
those I call have more than one number that can be
called and I normally try one of the other numbers
if I get an answerphone. Even when there isnt another
number to call, I don’t always want to be called back,
I often prefer to try calling again later when it is
convenient for me to do that.
Possibly a setup problem.
You have a few choices -
If they have CLID teach them to answer unsolicited calls with "dead air"
- say absolutely nothing after picking up. Confuses the autodialer and
if you do get a human it is fun to listen to them being puzzled.
An add on box that sits between the phone and the outside world which
screens calls against some black list and internal rules. I have one on
my line and then an answerphone which kills most of the rest. There is a
big red button on it for "Block last caller". Something like this:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
A phone that has blocking built in. But that might also cause problems
if they are very familiar with their existing phone.
If they have no genuine overseas calls then a rule to block them will be
highly effective. Likewise for regular nuisance callers - they may be on
a suckers list which could explain the higher call frequency.
BT's choose to refuse service which allows nuisance callers to be
blocked (but in the hands of the elderly can be risky).
Not any more. International calls from spammers seem to have spoofed UK
numbers. I have an (old) caller display unit which logs all calls
irrespective of the Trucall phone silently rejecting International and
number withheld numbers. In the past I had a lot of cold callers with a
International number but in the past six months none at all.
Possibly not if just the basic service is used - just using the BT
blacklist and not adding to it themselves.
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