Spam calls are a massive and growing concern, and with cell phones continuing to shape and refine our culture, scammers are constantly finding new ways to pull their ploys. They’re annoying, dangerous, and here to stay — for now, at least. The good news is that you can take specific precautions to keep scammers and spammers off your phone and out of your bank account.
The good news is, there are effective ways to reduce and block spam calls. Read on to find out how to stop spam calls on Android and protect yourself and your family from dangerous scams.
Spam callers adapt to our trends so they can infiltrate our phones and steal our money, assets, and identities. Over 78 billion of these dangerous annoyances flooded our phone lines in 2022, leading to more than $65 billion in losses to phone scams — and the number rises every year.
Although government agencies like the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) work around the clock to keep spam calls off the airwaves, the tactics spammers use can be incredibly effective and difficult to trace. Spammers use auto-dialing technology to make mass calls, spoof their numbers to trick their targets’ caller IDs, and change their numbers when they’re blocked. This makes it crucial for people to know how to recognize and handle spam calls when they come in.
The first step in protecting yourself from spam calls is learning how to identify them. The term generally refers to annoying calls from unknown numbers made to a mass of people. Spam calls are often used to perpetrate scams (scam calls) and can be done using pre-recorded messages and auto-dialing technology (robocalls).
Spam calls often appear to come from local numbers, imitating your area code and sometimes the first three digits of your phone number. This technique, called caller ID spoofing, allows spammers to disguise their phone numbers as any other number — even that of a business you trust. Once they get you on the line, they may fabricate a high-pressure situation to extract personal information like account numbers and passwords.
Not every call you get from an unknown number is a spam call, but it can be tough to tell based on your caller ID alone. If you don’t recognize the number calling you, or your screen says something like “Spam Likely,” don’t pick up the phone.
The best way to protect yourself from scams is to prevent spam calls from ringing your phone in the first place. Fortunately, there are a few effective methods you can use to block spam calls to your Android smartphone.
One way to reduce unwanted calls is to register for the National Do Not Call Registry. This database is managed by the FTC and prohibits telemarketers from contacting the numbers on it. Marketers that don’t abide by the Do Not Call Registry face steep fines and other punishments.
There are a few ways you can add your number to the Do Not Call Registry:
Once your number has been added to the Do Not Call Registry, it will stay there for as long as you own it. There’s no need to renew your registration later on.
Unfortunately, the Do Not Call Registry can only do so much — and it doesn’t eliminate spam. It only applies to legitimate telemarketing calls, which are not the main enemy in the war on spam. If you’ve signed up for the Do Not Call Registry and you get a call that appears to be from a legitimate company, that’s a sign it’s likely a scam.
Your phone carrier may also offer a way to block spam calls, generally by dialing a number or using a carrier-based spam blocker. Here’s how to stop spam calls on Android through three of the major mobile carriers:
If a spammer has contacted you, don’t wait to block them. Here’s how to block specific phone numbers on an Android phone:
Unfortunately, this isn’t the most efficient method to deal with a constant barrage of spam calls. Spammers change their numbers frequently and easily, so they can always call you again from a new one.
You can also screen your calls so only your contacts can get through. Here’s how to block all unknown calls to your Android smartphone:
With this feature, any calls not in your contact list will be blocked. However, that means you might accidentally block important calls from your doctor or your child’s school if they’re not already in your phonebook.
Whereas iPhones are relatively streamlined, Android devices offer a bit more variety. The basic mechanisms are similar, but different types of Android phones may require slightly different processes for blocking numbers and preventing spam. Let’s learn how to block unwanted calls on some of the more popular types of Android devices.
The ways to block spam calls on Android may slightly vary between devices, but they’re relatively straightforward across the board. Here’s how to block numbers from unknown callers on your Google Pixel:
If you want to block a specific number on your Google Pixel device:
Alternatively, you can simply long-tap the number from your call history and tap Block/report spam. This way, you can block and report the number in one motion.
Samsung phones offer a feature called Smart Call, which allows your device to screen unwanted numbers. Setting up Smart Call is similar to setting up call screening on your Pixel. Here’s how to do it on your Samsung device:
With this feature enabled, you’ll have the option to block and report numbers as your phone rings.
Samsung phones also allow you to block individual numbers from callers who have already tried to contact you. Follow these steps to block numbers from the Phone app on your Samsung device:
Like Google Pixel devices, Samsung phones also allow you to block numbers from your call log. In your Recents tab, simply tap the number, then Details, then Block.
Regardless of what type of Android phone you use, you can generally block individual callers and set up call screening to prevent calls from numbers you haven’t previously saved.
Android devices offer built-in features that can help you reduce spam and scam calls, but none of them are perfect solutions. If they’re not getting the job done on their own, it may be time to use a different type of Android app to block spam calls. Unlike the built-in options that come with your device, third-party spam blockers were specifically designed to detect and filter spam calls. These apps fend off spammers before they can ring your phone, protecting you and your family from annoying callers and dangerous scams. There are many Android spam blockers on the market, so be sure to compare your options to find the one that best suits your needs.
The bad news is that you have to receive a spam call in order to report it to the authorities; the good news, however, is that doing so can help protect others. By informing the appropriate government agencies about spam calls, you help hold the scammers accountable.
You can report spam calls and other fraud to the FTC by visiting ReportFraud.ftc.gov. The FTC uses these reports to investigate and bring claims against the criminals behind the scams.
You can also report spam calls to the FCC online. Just enter some basic information, choose Unwanted Calls/Messages from the drop-down menu, and then fill out the form to file your complaint.
Learning how to stop spam calls on Android is an ongoing process. The more tools you have in your anti-spam toolbox, the better you can protect yourself, your family, and others from dangerous spam and scams. Here are a few extra tips to prevent spam calls.
If you get a call from a number you don’t recognize, don’t answer it. If it’s important, the caller will leave a voicemail or send you a text. If the call appears to come from a legitimate business, call them back at a publicly listed number.
Think before you add your phone number to your social media profiles or share personal information online. This only makes it easier for spammers to find your number, sell it to other scammers, and bombard your phone with spam calls.
It may be tempting to answer a spam call and give the spammer a piece of your mind, but that type of revenge can come back to haunt you. Answering a spam call confirms that the caller found an active number, which may lead to more spam in the future. The same goes for spam texts; don’t answer them, even if you think you’re just opting out of a mailing list.
Third-party apps are a necessity in the fight against spam, but it’s important to find the best one for the job. Robokiller offers comprehensive coverage and the full scope of features you need to make spam a thing of the past.
Here are a few reasons you need Robokiller:
A trustworthy call-blocking app is an essential tool for your Android phone, and Robokiller is the most effective one out there. It protects you and your family from annoying and dangerous spam calls by giving you complete control of who can and can’t reach you. On top of that, it lets you contribute to the fight against scammers who rob Americans of billions of dollars every year, so you can help keep the community safe.
Now that you know how to stop spam calls on Android, all you have to do is get started. Start living life spam-call-free™ with a free 7-day trial of Robokiller!
Although there are measures you can take to reduce spam calls, such as joining the Do Not Call Registry and blocking individual numbers, the best way to eliminate them altogether is to download a robocall blocker app. Robokiller uses predictive algorithms to stop 99% of spam calls from reaching your phone.
Scammers can obtain your cell phone number in several ways — through publicly shared information online, data breaches, surveys, purchased lists, and even at random with automated dialers. Be sure to avoid sharing your number online and use strong privacy settings on social media.
Most robocalls are designed to trick you into giving something up — your information, your money, or otherwise. Every year, scammers steal billions of dollars from people over the phone, so it’s important to protect against getting scammed. The best way to do it is with a robocall blocker app like Robokiller, which blocks 99% of unwanted calls.
Third-party robocall blocker apps like Robokiller are highly effective at combating spam calls. They use predictive algorithms to detect likely scams in real-time and rely on extensive databases of known scam callers to proactively defend users against spam. Robokiller is 99% effective at blocking spam calls.