Mid-Missourians find creative ways to fight unceasing robocalls

6 months 4 weeks 2 days ago Monday, February 18 2019 Feb 18, 2019 Monday, February 18, 2019 4:16:00 PM CST February 18, 2019 in News
By: David Estrada, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLE COUNTY - From not answering their cell phones, to trying multiple apps and buying equipment for their landline, phone users in mid-Missouri are doing whatever it takes to fight robocalls. 

In December, KOMU 8 News reported that records from the Missouri Attorney General's Office show Missourians requested 40,403 telephone numbers be added to the state "No-Call" list, between Sept. 20, 2017 and Sept. 20, 2018.

Charles Jackson signed up for the Missouri No-Call list 14 years ago but he said he continues to get robocalls. 

"I get probably five or six calls a week, not a lot," he said. "Sometimes from that same number, I'd get several calls from that same number and if I don't answer for three or four days, or a week, then they'd stop calling."

About three years ago, Jackson decided to not answer calls from unknown numbers on his cell phone and just let them go straight into voicemail, which he said has helped to fight unwanted calls. 

"I was just getting a bunch of calls, and then because of that it's even reduced even more because of that," he said.

Callers who go straight into Jackson's voicemail hear the following recording:

"Due to the large number of telemarketing calls, I do not answer numbers I do not recognize. Please leave your name and number and I will get back with you as soon as I can, sorry for the inconvenience. Have a blessed day!"

Jackson said sometimes people who leave him messages react with humor to his voicemail. 

"Sometimes, they'd leave little messages like, they understand what it's taking place, or they'd make some little funny comment about," he said. "They’d make comments like, well I'm leaving my name and number because I want to make sure you call me back."

Michael Phillips has also been fighting with robocalls, both on his cell phone and on his home phone. 

"They've been going on for quite some time, over the past several years," he said. "I really got perturbed this past November when somebody tried to fraudulently use my I.D. for poor purposes."

One of the first things he did was contact his phone service provider, magicJack.

"My phone company has something called 'call screenings,'" he said. "I can go into, right online and change it, turn it on and off as I please. Right now is on, I have no problem with the people trying to give me a call, no robocalls, no telemarketers."

He even bought a box to connect to his landline that blocks a certain number of robocalls.

Phillips said he continues to do research on how to stop robocalls because he is tired of getting unwanted calls. 

"I don't want that anymore, I don't want that anymore in my life," he said. 

For his cell phone, Phillips has tried six different apps that promise to stop or reduce the number of robocalls. 

"If other people are using the robos against you, use the robos for you," he said. "Why not take advantage of what's available out there right now?"

Some of the apps he has tried include Mr. Number; Calls Blacklist - Call Blocker; SMS blocker, call blocker; and RoboStop.

Most recently, Phillips installed RoboKiller, a paid app which even answers spam calls and play a recorded conversation to fool the caller. 

"If you have caller ID, you see the number that's on there, you don't have to answer that, but you can use technology for you, have the bot talk to the bot, it's a waste of their time," he said. 

Jackson retired from the Missouri State Highway Patrol. He said not answering unknown numbers might not be an option for some people, especially those who need their phone in their job. 

"If they're in a business getting calls, they are getting calls all the time from numbers that they are not familiar with," he said. "It hampers them to be getting these robocalls, so they have to answer every call."

Jackson said, because of his work with the community, sometimes he has to answer calls from numbers he doesn't recognize. 

"Every once in a while I'd be involved in some type or project or something, on a committee, and I have people calling me, and so you just go ahead and answer the call and then sometimes it’s a robocall or a telemarketer," he said. 

However, Jackson said he doesn't plan on giving up his method to robocalls. 

"I'm going to continue to use the process that I use now," he said. 

Phillips also calls lawmakers to support consumers, on the legal side, in the fight against robocalls. 

"We're doing our part as the consumer, we just expect our state representatives to do the same, fight for us," he said. 

Both phone users encourage other people to not give up on getting rid of robocallers. 

Jackson said, "If you are not in a business where you have to answer the call, turn the volume down, let it go to voicemail and then when you start listening to it you can just delete it and move on but don't get frustrated."

Phillips said, "Technology is evolving, it's evolving everyday. We as a consumer, we need to take advantage of that and use that ourselves for our own protection."

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Some new artwork is continuing to pop up and gain interest on the MU campus. So far,... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, September 18 2019 Sep 18, 2019 Wednesday, September 18, 2019 6:30:00 AM CDT September 18, 2019 in News
MOBERLY - A man with four active warrants was arrested Monday night. According to a press release from the... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, September 18 2019 Sep 18, 2019 Wednesday, September 18, 2019 6:17:00 AM CDT September 18, 2019 in News
MEXICO - Outside the Audrain County courthouse Wednesday, a group of people rallied to create awareness about pets and the... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 11:23:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Police announced they found human remains during a landfill search consistent with the description of a Columbia woman... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 11:00:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Teachers, students and parents at Blue Ridge Elementary School are getting used to new security measures. Over... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 6:04:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Multiple people were trapped in elevators across MU's campus as a result of a widespread power outage Tuesday... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 5:26:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
CAMDENTON - Police are investigating after a Walmart employee found a man dead in a car in the parking lot... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 4:08:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Residents are asking for road improvements after a driver hit and killed a 17-year-old girl on Clark Lane... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 3:46:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The amount of water flowing down the lower Missouri River this year is approaching the... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 3:39:47 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA -MU's football attendance is showing signs of revival, following years of steady decline. The Tigers' average home attendance... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 2:36:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Parents of Columbia Public School students are demanding a change to the way they treat students with special... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 2:29:00 PM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
(CNN) -- Veteran journalist Cokie Roberts, winner of three Emmys and a legend and trailblazer in broadcasting, has died at... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 10:06:00 AM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Missouri State Highway Patrol is helping two county agencies with a death investigation Tuesday. Troop F,... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 8:28:00 AM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - School Resource Officers (SROs) will be staying in Columbia Public Schools for at least another month. The Columbia... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, September 17 2019 Sep 17, 2019 Tuesday, September 17, 2019 1:22:00 AM CDT September 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A seventeen-year-old is dead after being hit by a car while walking on Clark Lane late Monday night.... More >>
2 days ago Monday, September 16 2019 Sep 16, 2019 Monday, September 16, 2019 11:20:00 PM CDT September 16, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A woman face charges of domestic assault, property damage and driving while intoxicated after investigators said she... More >>
2 days ago Monday, September 16 2019 Sep 16, 2019 Monday, September 16, 2019 10:11:00 PM CDT September 16, 2019 in News
BELLEFONTAINE NEIGHBORS, Mo. — A head-on crash in Cole County over the weekend killed a St. Louis County couple travelling... More >>
2 days ago Monday, September 16 2019 Sep 16, 2019 Monday, September 16, 2019 9:45:00 PM CDT September 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Hickman High School got its first eSports club five years ago, but this year, it's finally getting its... More >>
3 days ago Monday, September 16 2019 Sep 16, 2019 Monday, September 16, 2019 3:00:00 PM CDT September 16, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 91°
4pm 90°
5pm 89°
6pm 84°
7pm 82°