Three Ways to Block Spam On Your Mobile Device

  • Reporter

Notice the pestering calls are now going to your mobile phone? There are three ways to stop unwanted calls on your mobile device. First of all you should check your phone to see if there are any build in features you can utilize. Next look into what services your carrier may offer. Finally you can explore call blocking app. Be mindful as some apps are free but some charges a monthly fee. Also some apps will ask if you allow them to access your contacts. You will be able to stop calls or have it ring silently or even go straight to voicemail. 

1. Mobile phone build in alerts:

A few phone makers now offer built-in alerts for when a call is probably a fraud. Samsung's Smart Call alerts you if the number that’s calling is a known robocaller. Smart Call comes with new Samsung Galaxy phones starting with the S7 and includes the Note 8.

On Google’s Pixel phones, the default Google Phone app lights up your screen with a bright red warning telling you not to answer the spam calls. It’s already a great feature, but a new update rolling out soon makes it even better by sending spam calls straight to voicemail and never bothering you with them. The beauty of this is even if you don’t have a google pixel phone you can still download this app for Android.

2. Carrier's spam services:

Wireless carriers are sick and tired of robocalls, too. All the major carriers now have their own apps to stop spam calls, and most of them are free with your plan.

AT&T: Call Protect (iOS, Android, free)

AT&T’s app can auto-block suspected fraud calls and alert you if a caller is likely a robocall spammer. If you find a spammer using a number that wasn’t picked up, you can easily block them manually as well.

Verizon: Caller Name ID (iOS, Android, free)

Caller Name ID offers alerts for suspected spam callers before you bother to answer, as well as marks new spam numbers and shares blocked spam numbers with people on your contact list who also have the app.

T-Mobile: Scam Block (Android, pre-installed, free)

T-Mobile customers with Android phones get a handy scam-blocker built right into their phones. The feature (which you enable by dialing #662#) automatically blocks known scam call numbers without any additional setup. A second helpful app, also preinstalled on T-Mobile smartphones running Android, is called Name ID. It labels unknown numbers as possible spam if they’ve been reported in the past.

Sprint: Premium Caller ID (iOS, Android, $2.99/Month)

Unlike the previous three carriers, Sprint’s solution to spam call blocking is a bit different. It’s a paid monthly service that lets you register your name. This helps the carrier figure out who is a real caller so that it can alert you of potential spammers and robocallers. It works with any iOS or Android phone on Sprint’s network, and you don’t have to install any additional apps.

3. Apps:

Apps out there to block scam calls. Wouldn't it be great if you can just install an app and it does the job of blocking all your unwanted calls?

There is quite a few selection of apps out there such as Nomorobo, Truecaller, Hiya, RoboKiller and YouMail to do this job. Many of the apps are free for at least a week, then cost around $2 a month or about $20 a year.

For Nomorobo you have to manually reset the refresh in order to screen the updated numbers every 4 months or so. To do that, you into the settings and “refresh” it, it gets better at screening out scam calls again. YouMail actually delivers a message to known scammers that your number is out of service and sometimes that might be enough for them to stop calling. Still need to explore the other apps for further comments. Please feel free to comment below for your experiences.

You can also report unwanted calls at ftc.gov/complaint