Several carriers have implemented some good anti-spoofing technologies lately, and several haven’t. Rather than receiving spoofed calls lately (phone calls with fake caller ID,) I’m getting calls from people who received phone calls supposedly from my number. A common scammer tactic of using legitimate phone numbers, usually in the same area code, to get you to pick the phone up.
TL;DR – anyone with a PBX can claim whatever on their caller ID (name/number,) and it’s being exploited targeting the cheapest phone networks that still allow it.
At first I thought it was a bit strange, T-Mobile/Sprint had implemented some protections immediately before I started getting a torrent of these calls, but now they’re a regular occurrence as my work, cell phone, etc get them on a daily basis. The common factor is these people calling us are usually on bargain basement carriers.
At this point I’ve had enough conversations with people to determine that it’s a couple of carriers, the people who are getting the calls are returning them, and also that attempting to explain caller ID spoofing to most of the people calling does not accomplish anything.
At first I thought I was the victim of a phishing expedition as two of the great phone sleuths attempted to determine my name and profession, which if you have my phone number buddy it’s out there on the internet, you’re not Sherlock Holmes.
Having to answer the phone for unknown numbers due to supporting a wide variety of clients means I don’t get the luxury of not answering my phone. It’s started tying up our front desk at work as people call back and, well, our building has 30+ different companies leasing space. The people who call us thinking we called them instead of a spoofer are not the people who seem to want to understand that we don’t control what their phone service lets through.
So the script is now “we didn’t call you, you can investigate what spoofing is, here’s how to call block our phone number since you don’t do business with us and we’re not calling you.”
Now if we could just get the carriers to actually do something about caller ID spoofing. Having the FCC trot out someone every 2.5 years for a massive fine doesn’t accomplish anything when 40,000 companies are doing it daily.