Robocalls Surge, How To Deal
George Morris is a local car salesman who says he is plagued by robocalls daily, and it has lasted for several years. He receives calls that about healthcare, and that his service contracts will run out. He says with his line of work, he can't ignore them.
"[If it's] any of my clients, I'm going to answer the call," says Morris. "So..it's very irritating to be capture in a system where you can't avoid it."
George is far from alone. Robocall rates reached an estimated 3.4 billion in April, according to YouMail, a robocall-blocking service.
"If you block the call, they can call you again on a different number, or they just keep calling you back. It's really irritating." adds Morris.
Mike Rohrer of the Better Business Bureau says robo-callers are becoming more sophisticated. Many of them use neighborhood spoofing, calling from numbers that mimic the area code of the person receiving the call. In an effort to increase their likelihood of picking up.
"They set up a machine that's dialing a whole bunch of numbers," alerts Rohrer. "Sometimes they don't want to talk to you, all they want you to do is answer. Because it'll confirm that they made a connection, and that they have a live phone. And then, they'll sell or transfer your number to a multitude of other companies who will then try to scam you."
Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge says her office is putting pressure on the FCC to allow phone companies to block robo-callers from spoofing customer caller ID's.
"I encourage people to...if they realize it is a robo-caller to just go ahead and hang up," A.G. Rutledge advises.
Rutledge adds "Often times the individuals making these robo-calls are criminals, and con-artists. If someone wants to get a hold of you...they'll leave you a message. They will get in touch with you."
Rohrer says robo-call technology is continuing to outpace regulations.