CHOICE membership

Hounded by nuisance callers?

nuisance
calls
scams

#1

Have you or a family member been hounded by telemarketers harassing you for money?

CHOICE is releasing some new research on nuisance calls and we are looking for someone who has been affected and is willing to share their experience with the media.

If you’re interested please comment or send an email to media@choice.com.au


Defences against SMS scam?
Charities harassing the general public
#2

I’ve had plenty of nuisance calls from 07 3606 0825, although they have not asked for money, as there is no one on the line. You answer it and a few seconds later they (or the calling machine) hang up. If you call back there is a recorded message saying it is a charity organisation, but it doesn’t say which one.

Normally I don’t hear from them for many months, then get 2 calls per day for a few days, then they go quiet again.
Checking online, a lot of other people have had the same experience with this number. Unfortunatley there is no call blocking with Android 5 on my phone, but a previous version did have it.
I installed a highly rated call blocker, but removed it shortly afterwards, as it crashed every time I tried to run it, and haven’t bothered to try any others, as the calls have stopped again, for now anyway.


#3

At around morning tea, lunchtime and dinner time I get daily calls from scammers claiming I owe taxes to the ATO and a warrant has been sworn out for my arrest.

Also get calls for the occasional microsoft scam.

As I have call number monitoring I never answer as the numbers are not known to my phone directory.
But they occasionally leave messages telling me to quickly call them back to avoid being arrested.

One real company that is always calling my cell phone trying to sell insurance is Real Insurance I keep blocking their calls but they keep trying with new numbers.


#4

08 8334 7555 is another caller I’ve had twice today that hangs up after I answer. Apparently it is the Australian Kidney Foundation, and has also generated a lot of complaints due to continual calling and then hanging up.


#5

I get so many scam calls on my mobile that I have created a blocked list.
Trouble is that the phone still rings on blocked. I haven’t been able to find a way to prevent blocked numbers from making the mobile ring. I tried “do not disturb” in settings but that leads to other problems. Of course, then there’s the land line, my hot line to India.


#6

I get so many nuisance calls on m fixed line phone I don’t pick it up any more. It’s often someone who hangs up, or there is silence before I am put through to a call centre, at which point I hang up since there is no point being harassed about something I don’t want. Or it’s a charity harassing me, or it’s a scammer saying Telstra is about to cut off my internet. Or it’s Baird or Turnbull on a robo call trying to convince me to vote for them.


#7

They are annoying. I’ve a app on my phone to stop them now. That digital cohorts I had to email management to stop them. My very elderly parents keep the phone off the hook which is crazy as they’re elderly and need to hear from doctors and hospitals about their appointments. My mother answered a call today saying someone was arriving to install solar panels. They obviously got their name, address and phone number out of the phone book. They actually live in a government home so whoever rang didn’t realise that they can’t just fix whatever they like to the home. We are all on the Do Not Call Registry to no avail.


#8

I know what you mean. I thought there were laws against harassment, apparently not. I wonder why I pay Telstra for the land line, like paying for your own torture.


#9

We are on the Do Not Call register, however quite a number of callers claimed they had an existing relationship as my husband had engaged with them previously. He has trouble spotting a scam and if someone on the phone asks him to get out his credit card, he will. He was especially vulnerable & lonely after his wife died and signed up for merchandise, donated & bought charity goods that he didn’t want. After we were married I discovered the extent of his problem and helped him cancel subscriptions and donations and got Caller ID, programmed in the unwanted calls and assigned a different ring tone. He knows not to answer these and to hand the phone to me for unknown callers. 9 years later, we have just about shed all our annoying calls, most have given up and we don’t appear on the lists generated by the “6 ring hang-up” callers.


#10

I have had a few ‘local’ calls as in Australian phone number showing on my landline and they have left messages to calll the number. The person has an "Indian accent’ and no other instruction except to call and I just ignore it. I work at home a lot and the landline will ring ofyen and show it is an overseas call which I ignore. I am supposedly (tis a joke) on the Do not call list. This Do not call list of course exludes politicians and charities which I regularly get on my mobile phone as well.


#11

I get regular calls from the NSW Fire Association (I may have that name a bit wrong). I always tell them that I won’t donate until they have tax deductible status, and ask them not to call until they do. they take no notice and the last time they called I asked them to take me off their list. We’ll see if they do. I AM on the don’t call register.


#12

Yes I got at least 2 or 3 of those calls every day and I get very annoying with them I left the answer machine to take the call because I know what it is but they never leave any messages they are scammers


#13

Yes I get too many nuisance calls, but I refuse to use the Do-Not-Call register. The DNC-R implementation was simply wrong from day-1. The DNC-R is an expensive and cumbersome invasion-of-privacy. A typical Howard-govt screw up. DNC-election should be a simple service-option agreed between the phone-customer and the service-provider. The service-provider then feeds a flat-list of DNC numbers (with no personal info) to the DNC-R. Tell them to K-I-S-S. P


#14

If you have a VOIP (Voice Over IP) number at home, eg because you are on the NBN, you should be able to configure your modem to reject specified numbers.
We have a naked ADSL service with a VOIP home number. It’s very easy to add numbers to our modem’s block list, and whenever that number calls in future, the phone(s) won’t even ring.


#15

ICYMI: We launched a new campaign asking for Australians to be able to opt-out of all unwanted calls where people are asking for money.

Join the campaign at choice.com.au/controlthecalls, and please share it with your friends and social networks.


#16

Being able to block at the modem on a VOIP number is another reason for the current lot to pull their collective finger out and get the NBN finished for all australians


#17

Hey @BrendanMays. I would like the campaign to extend to all except emergency calls. I want to be able to say NO calls, so it means NO calls. So no charities, no politicians, nothing except emergency services.

Also, I would like to see the ban extend to the use of overseas call centres for Australian businesses, charities etc. At present, there is a loophole where the organisation can engage overseas call centres to make the calls on their behalf, and we can’t stop them.


#18

Thanks @meltam, I’ll be sure to pass on your comments to the wider campaigns team. So far, we’re up to nearly 13,000 signatures and we’re hoping this number will grow.


#19

already signed it :blush:


#20

Yes, I agree that we should be able to say no to all calls except emergency type calls. The Do Not Call Register did work for a while and calls were drastically reduced however the two loopholes - charities and politicians should go. Charities are half the problem. Why would I want to get called by a politician? If I want to talk to a politician I will ring them!

The other problem is overseas call centres who seem to call with impunity and a lot of them are scam callers. The other problem that needs to be addressed urgently is Australian businesses getting overseas call centres to call on their behalf. They should be easy to catch using ‘stings’. eg: you get the call about getting new solar panels, you say yes. Within a short time the Australian business will contact you about installation, you dob them in. Now if they then get fined say $25,000 for a first offence of using an overseas call centre they will very soon stop doing it. Once word gets around all Australian businesses won’t take the risk and that clears out quite a number of nuisance calls. However, the government has to have the desire and the guts to do this.