It often doesn’t take much for your precious mobile number to end up on the call listings of canvassing companies. Whether you forgot to check the box on a form to indicate that you do not want your number to be passed on to third parties, or if you simply used your number to post an ad on Leboncoin, the companies behind unwanted calls are often increasingly aggressive when it comes to canvassing.
Any pretext is good to call you: a promise to lower your taxes, your electricity bill, or even a proposal for a preferential rate for a fiber subscription that you do not need, the companies who are followers of this practice are very often with the cat and the mouse so as not to be detected, in particular by frequently changing the number.
But there are other threats to your phone. Spam and other scams, by SMS, exist in different forms: SMS inviting you to call back a premium rate number and others “Ping calls” (calls from premium rate numbers or from abroad that leave only one ring in the hope that you will call them back) can, if not correctly identified, dramatically increase your telephone bill.
While it is still quite difficult to get rid of all these parasites for good, there are several solutions that, once in place, will allow you to limit or even drastically reduce these repeated unwanted calls.
1. Block numbers from your smartphone
This might make sense, and the majority of advanced users probably already know the trick. On iOS and Android, unwanted numbers can be blocked both from text messages and from the call log. But for laymen, finding this option is not always easy.
On your iPhone, from SMS, press the button i displayed at the top of the window, then enter the info. At the bottom of the contact card, tap Block this correspondent.
The handling from the call log is much the same. Push the button i displayed to the right of the line for the number to be blocked, and press Block this correspondent in the contact card that appears.
From your Android smartphone, handling is even easier. From SMS, long press on the number to block, and tap on the button with a prohibition sign at the top right.
A pop-up Block and report as spam is displayed. Check the box Report as spam and confirm by pressing okay.
By doing so, the number and message of the malotru will be automatically transferred to Google and your operator. Messages from blocked numbers will be automatically stored in the section Spam and conversation blocked, accessible from the option menu of the Messages application.
From the Android call log, tap and hold the suspicious number, then in the option menu that appears, choose to Block / report as spam. Then validate the blocking by pressing Block in the pop-up that appears.
2. Download Orange Telephone
Not many people know this, but Orange has a free app that can tell you when a suspicious number calls you. Orange Telephone, that is its name, is available for free on iOS and Android and is not intended only for the operator’s customers. All iOS and Android users, regardless of operator, can install and use it.
This application works as a spam filter and will allow you to identify direct telephone calls as well as malicious calls.
Thanks to a database of numbers, known to be unwanted or malicious, loaded into the application, Orange Telephone displays directly on the call screen of your smartphone, a “malicious call” or “commercial canvassing” indication. These details are also kept in the Call log.
Be careful, however, to make the most of the features on Android, Orange Telephone needs to be used instead of your usual Telephone application.
On iOS, you can also help, as a user, to report unwanted numbers that contact you. You can do this by copying the number from the call log, then pasting it into the application to indicate whether the number is malicious or canvassing.
3. Report spam by SMS
To complete your anti-spam arsenal, be aware that it is possible to report unwanted SMS to a dedicated platform. While some SMS indicate that it is possible to send a simple STOP so as not to be bothered by the sender of the message, some SPAM does not offer any solution to “unsubscribe” your number.
All that remains is to report the unwelcome visitors to 33 700, an official service for reporting SPAM by SMS to the authorities.
To do this, you must first transfer the message concerned to 33700. The service will then ask you to complete your report by returning the telephone number to report in response.
To forward a message, make a long press on the message bubble and press More. The message should then be selected. Then press the transfer button at the bottom right, then in the window for writing a new SMS, enter 33700 in recipient and send the message.
After receiving the response from 33700, complete your report by sending the number concerned in response to the message.
Just as easy is transferring a message. Keep your finger pressed on the disputed message to select it, press the option button represented by three small dots, and choose to Forward it, in a New Message, and enter 33700 in the recipient box.
You will then receive a confirmation SMS. You will then need to respond by entering the phone number of the message sender to complete your report.