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wiseGEEK: How do I Block a Phone Number?

There are numerous reasons why a person might want to block a phone number either for incoming or outgoing calls. Luckily, there are numerous methods that make blocking a phone number a quick and simple process. Thanks to improved technology, usually all that is required to block a phone number is to press a few numbers into the keypad, call the telephone service provider. or visit a convenient website.

The type of calls people most wish to block come from telemarketers, who in years past were notorious for calling at the most inconvenient times possible. Thanks to the National Do Not Call Registry (NDNCR), which is administered by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), almost all telemarketing calls can be permanently stopped. Phone numbers to be blocked from telemarketer harassment can be registered at the NDNCR website free of charge, or by calling 1-888-382-1222 from the number you wish to block.

Also, contrary to urban myth, cell phone numbers can also be registered with the NDNCR. After registration, annoying phone calls should end within 31 days. A few might slip through the cracks now and again, but the FTC does not look kindly upon companies that abuse the NDNCR.

You can easily block phone calls from private parties. For landline phones, devices known as inbound call blockers allow you to accept calls only from specifically accepted individuals. Also, generally for a small fee, phone companies will provide

call screening or call blocking services. All that needs to be done is to provide the phone company with the number to be blocked. If the blocked caller attempts to ring through, he will either receive a busy signal, or be routed to a recorded message stating that calls are not accepted from his number.

Unfortunately, it is more difficult to block an unwanted call from a cell phone. In most cases, the best approach is to simply use a Caller ID service, and not accept messages from those to whom you do not wish to speak. While such is not the best solution, at the present time it may be the best one available.

You might wish to block your own phone number from being shown to others. To accomplish this, either on a landline or cell phone, punch in * (star) 67 before dialing a number. The result will be that the Caller ID device of the number you are calling will show you as either “Number Unknown” or “Private Number.”

Further, you can block a phone number by entering the number * (star) 60, and typing in the number you wish deleted. By entering this code you can selectively block a phone number, and the caller will be rejected. Again, most phone companies will charge a fee for this service, but it is nominal and often well worth the cost

Category: Bank

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