Your work phone rings and it’s an unknown caller. You go to pick up, hoping it might be a new lead. And then it happens…
We’ve been trying to reach you about your car’s extended warranty.
You’ve won a free cruise to the Bahamas!
You’ve been locked out of your account. Immediate action is required.
No matter the specifics, the same story plays out day after day: You spend your time fielding an avalanche of spam calls instead of conversing with clients, prospects, and colleagues.
Robocalls are an incessant distraction. They’re also disappointing — it’s understandable that, after a while, you might be skeptical that any call is a good one. But skepticism aside, the fact remains that your work phone isn’t your personal smartphone. Therefore, you can’t just hit decline and let calls go to voicemail. It could be someone important.
And therein lies the problem businesses face today: Scammers scam everyone, but they’re increasingly targeting work lines. They know you have no choice but to answer.
So, what can you do about it?
Before we get to solving the robocall problem, It’s important to understand why spam calls exist and why they’re not going away any time soon.
Robocalls deliver prerecorded messages from autodialers, or computer programs designed to dial telephone numbers from a list. Once you pick up, the prerecorded message starts playing.
Robocalls can occasionally be a good thing. For instance, you might receive a robocall from your doctor’s office reminding you about an upcoming appointment. In cases like these, it’s an efficient way to get information to someone who needs it.
But useful (and legal, for that matter) robocalls are few and far between. That’s because scammers have co-opted this technology for nefarious purposes: Namely, to rip off as many people as they can.
And it’s working.
Scammers stole an estimated $40 billion from Americans in the first half of 2022 alone. A significant portion of those losses stemmed from successful scams on business lines.
Because these scams are so effective, and because scammers have employees cornered without the freedom to decline their calls, the problem is only growing.
We know a few things for certain:
Now that scammers have identified business lines as a prime target, that means trouble for organizations from coast to coast. It only takes a single scam to affect your bottom line and reputation.
But let’s suppose your team is scam-proof and has unshakable spam radar. That still leaves one major problem: Robocalls waste a ton of time.
Just how much?
We know intuitively that workplace distractions negatively affect productivity, but some experts have actually found ways to quantify the effects.
The University of California Irvine examined the impact distractions have on productivity and found that, on average, it takes 23 minutes for a person to get back to a task after a lone distraction.
An efficiency and workflow consultant for major banks like Citibank and Merrill Lynch estimates that, in the financial services industry, interruptions cost more than 30 hours a week in lost productivity.
It’s not only the quantity of work at risk, it’s also the caliber of the work itself.
Researchers at George Mason University analyzed the impact distractions have on quality of work by evaluating essays written by students under three conditions: uninterrupted, interrupted during planning, and interrupted during writing. They found that the two interruption conditions significantly reduced quality scores.
Given the fact that interruptions crater productivity and quality in the workplace, it’s imperative that businesses do all they can to minimize them. And what greater interruption is there today than robocalls?
According to our research (you should download our free eBook to learn more), robocalls are increasing by the year. In fact, they’re on pace to once again shatter records in 2022.
Which brings us back to the original dilemma: How can you stop unwanted calls to your work phone?
Here are some useful steps you can take:
A good first step is to join the National Do Not Call Registry. You can do so by visiting donotcall.gov and entering your work phone number. You can also call 1-888-382-1222 from the number you want to register.
The National Do Not Call Registry, which is managed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), was designed to protect against unwanted sales calls, and it’s effective at doing exactly that with telemarketers.
If, after registering your work number with the National Do Not Call Registry, you still wind up getting spam calls, you’re not alone. As the FTC notes on its website, signing up for the registry may not protect you against all intrusive calls.
“If you’ve already added your phone number to the Do Not Call Registry and are still getting a lot of unwanted calls, odds are the calls are from scammers.” - FTC
Be sure to report fraudulent calls to the FTC. It’s unlikely to immediately solve your problem, but the agency does shut down scammers one by one.
Another useful measure is to simply block the phone numbers you don’t want to hear from. Most carriers afford their customers the ability to block specific callers.
One downside here is that it’s a reactive measure. Unless you know which numbers you don’t want to hear from, chances are you’re blocking them after you’ve already received some sort of telemarketing message or spam call.
Another snag is the fact they can just call you from a different phone number.
Make no mistake, steps 1-3 are worthwhile measures to take. But they’re not the end all be all solution to stopping robocalls. That’s because:
Specifically, scammers routinely spoof their numbers to make it look like a call is originating from a local, seemingly trustworthy number. This can be difficult to decipher in real time, even if you do have the luxury of scrutinizing whether to pick up an unknown call.
We’re only human, so it’s not a bad idea to enlist a little help. To stop caller ID spoofing and eliminate the possibility of human error, you need advanced technology on your side that can accurately identify and stop spoofed calls before they reach your phone.
Enter audio fingerprinting, a tool championed by RoboKiller and RoboKiller Enterprise. Audio fingerprinting examines the audio within a call to identify risky calls before they reach you. Scammers can change their numbers, but they can’t change their voices.
Whether you’re comparing consumer apps for your work-provided smartphone, seeking out a spam blocking solution for your team, or looking into ways to safeguard your company’s entire voice network, you’ll want to land on an option that features predictive call blocking. Here are a few options you might want to consider.
Spam call blockers are designed to rid you of risky robocalls and annoying telemarketing calls, but not all third-party apps are created equal. If your goal is to stop spam calls on your work phone, look into RoboKiller’s AI- and ML-powered call blocking solution, which blocks 99.9% of unwanted calls from reaching you.
Even if you aren’t getting robocalls on your work phone, that doesn’t mean your team members are free from these distractions and risky messages. That’s where RoboKiller For Teams enters the equation.
RoboKiller For Teams is a teamwide subscription to RoboKiller’s award-winning spam blocker app. It empowers you to protect your executives, salespeople, and every other member of your organization against over 600 million known spam threats. The app, to date, has saved Americans from over $400 million in losses to fraud. It also boasts full-scale spam text protection to curb the emerging SMS spam threat.
Whether you’re a small business, a Fortune 500 company, or somewhere in between, it’s a worthwhile investment to secure your business lines and eliminate the possibility a risky message could harm your company.
RoboKiller Enterprise’s API blocks 99.9% of spam calls network-wide. Plus, it empowers you to unlock phone number reputation insights so you can identify fraudulent incoming calls and pinpoint which numbers are worth interacting with in any form.
Unwanted calls aren’t going anywhere any time soon, and scammers are zeroing in on employees who are obligated to answer. The good news is, RoboKiller Enterprise solves widespread problems like number spoofing, and our plug-and-play solutions are 99.9% effective at eliminating time- and money-wasting robocalls.