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IPFS News Link • Privacy Rights

When You Answer The Phone And No One Is There


Have you ever answered the phone to find no one on the other end and wondered: What are they trying to sell me if they aren't speaking?

According to experts, these kinds of calls are step one in a phone fraud scheme that could lead to your identity being stolen and/or your bank account drained. The silence on the other end of the phone is actually a computer gathering information about you -- yes, just from your answering "Hello." A mere cough will signal to the computer that the 10 digits it just dialed is an active line, answered by humans.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, these kinds of calls are on the rise. "[Robocalling] is the No. 1 consumer complaint that we receive," FTC attorney Patty Hsue told NPR. On average, the FTC gets about 170,000 complaints a month related to robocalls.

1 Comments in Response to

Comment by Ed Vallejo
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WHEN ANSWERING A NUMBER YOU DO NOT RECOGNIZE: Do NOT say 'hello' or anything - wait for the caller to say something first. If, after several seconds you hear nothing but silence, HANG UP! Normally, if a person is on the other end they wait for the initial hello and when they don't hear it, they speak up. BEEN DOING THIS FOR YEARS. I'd say about 80% of the time I hear nothing and upon hanging up don't get return calls from that number. My 'silence' automatically removes me from a robocallers list! Ed