What is Phone Number Spoofing and How to Stop It?

Scammers and unscrupulous telemarketers continuously seek new techniques to convince people to take their calls. When the phone rings, most phones can screen calls and provide information about the caller. Scammers are increasingly employing the practice of falsifying or "spoofing" their caller ID information.

Caller ID spoofing displays a phone number or other information to make it appear as if the calls are coming from a different individual or business. While the caller's information may appear to be from within the state or country, telemarketers frequently make calls from outside the state or country. Many individuals believe that you can no longer trust Caller ID because of spoofing, which is commonly done with malevolent or unscrupulous intents by the caller.

What Is Phone Number Spoofing?

Let's go over the definition of phone spoofing before going any further. Phone spoofing is the process of concealing a caller's number and replacing it with another phone number in its most basic form. To put it another way, spoofing makes phone calls appear to come from one area while they originate from another.

Remember that phone spoofing is neither good nor evil in and of itself. It all depends on who and why this technology is being used. Legal spoofing happens when a corporation or professional wants to hide their phone number, prevalent in many professions.

Illegal spoofing occurs when third parties hide their identities for deceptive intentions or do not have the authority to spoof a phone number.

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology is commonly used in caller ID spoofing, which allows callers to modify the name and number that appears on the receiver's phone. You can work with various VoIP providers, but keep in mind that caller ID spoofing is regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). As a result, if your organization utilizes spoofing for valid reasons, you should stay up to date on any FCC regulation changes.

What Is the Process of Phone Phishing?

Call spoofing is called call spoofing when a caller provides bogus information to alter the caller ID. Most spoofing is done over the internet utilizing a VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service or an IP phone that uses VoIP to transmit calls. When setting up a VoIP account, consumers usually have the option of having their preferred number or name displayed on caller ID.

Some companies also provide spoofing services that function similarly to prepaid calling cards. Customers pay for a PIN code that they can use to call their service provider, which allows them to choose both the destination number and the number that will appear on the recipient's caller ID.

What are the dangers of phone spoofing?

Spoofing on cell phones and landlines is harmful because it uses social engineering techniques to trick victims into divulging personal information or paying over cash. Voice phishing is a type of phishing that involves manipulation like this.

Consider the following phone spoofing scenario: A fraudster finds out which organizations their target supports and then employs spoofing to make it appear as if they're phoning from the charity's genuine phone number. Before requesting a charitable gift, the spoofer may pretend that they are calling to confirm the victim's contact information.

A scammer may make a spoof call that appears to be from the IRS in a similar scenario. They may try to persuade their target to provide personal information such as their social security number under this guise. After that, the scammer's path to identity theft and fraud becomes considerably more manageable.

It's a huge red flag when someone asks for your social security number, but spoofing schemes aren't usually so obvious. The spoof call may appear from an IT help desk, and the caller may ask you to answer security questions to authenticate your identity before connecting you to an agent. If hackers obtain this information, they may use it to answer your security questions on other websites or boost their chances of cracking your passwords.

How to Prevent Phone Phishing?

Unfortunately, there aren't many options for dealing with scammers who fake your phone number and use it to defraud others, but there are a few things you can attempt that most phone carriers recommend.

Wait around two weeks.

If you're lucky, your phone number might be one of many phone fraudsters are using, and they'll cease using it after a while. If they're spoofing their neighbors, this may happen. This is when con artists utilize phone numbers to target people in your neighborhood.

Examine your telephone bill.

While most phone number spoofing isn't a symptom of identity theft, it can be, so check your phone history, reports, and invoices to make sure everything seems regular.

Boost the security of your phone calls.

Limiting calls to contacts in your address book is possible on iPhones and Android cellphones. Calls received from other numbers will be routed to voice mail. You can even use your old-school landline to block numbers.

Change or set your voicemail password.

Most voicemail and message bank services can be accessed by simply dialing their number from your phone. If someone uses your phone number to impersonate you, they will undoubtedly have access to all of your communications. If you haven't previously done so, create a password or security PIN for your messaging service, or replace the one you have now if the spoofer has gotten access to it.

Make a brand-new voice message.

If you're getting great deals of calls from angry phone scam victims, modify your message bank voice message to say that your phone number has been faked, that you're sorry, and that anyone who has gotten a scammy call from you should block it.

Notify your mobile service provider.

Any unusual behavior involving your phone number should be reported to your carrier. Many carriers include assistance pages for dealing with identity theft and phone spoofing.

Change your phone number.

This is most likely the last thing on your mind. Still, if your phone number has been severely faked and you've been receiving a significant number of calls from furious scam victims regularly for more than a month, it may be necessary.

Updated on: 15-Mar-2022

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