Stopping spam calls using apps and settings on your smartphone

Posted at 5:06 PM, Aug 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-24 19:06:29-04

Let's be honest, spam calls can be a real pain, especially when they seem real, but there are a few things you can try in order to prevent them from going through.

The first thing to try is turning on settings that are already on your smartphone.

On an Android device:

  1. Tap More options, Settings, Spam and Call Screen.
  2. Turn See caller & spam ID on.
  3. To block spam calls on your phone, turn on Filter suspected spam calls.

On an iPhone, open the Settings app, scroll down to Phone, then select Silence Unknown Callers and make sure the feature is turned on.

Depending on which wireless carrier you have will depend on the type of extra spam call blocking capabilities they offer.

T-Mobile offers a free app called Scam Shield, which blocks calls that it thinks are spammers or scammers and it will count how many it has blocked for you in the past 30 days.

For any Sprint customers that haven't migrated to T-Mobile yet, there is an app called Sprint Call Screener that will block callers based on the risk of them being spam.

Verizon also offers a free app, which is called Verizon Call Filter and it will automatically block spam callers.

AT&T has its own spam call blocking app called AT&T Protect.

Even with these spam call prevention apps, it's still possible for scammers to get through to your phone by spoofing the number of someone you know.

If this happens to you and you do answer the phone, just hang up.

If spam callers do make it through the filters you can manually block the numbers on your phone.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recommend reporting spam callers to them, which you can do on their websites.

Both government agencies also suggest registering for the Do Not Call Registry.