Nearly half of all calls will be spam by 2019

Let’s face it: Spam calls are getting out of control. As someone who actually enjoys talking on the phone, I’m constantly in a state of frustration over the sheer number of spam calls I get. As it turns out, this is only going to get worse, as Arkansas-based First Orion Corporation reports that nearly half of all phone calls will be spam callers by 2019.

Nearly half of all calls will be spam by 2019

In a press release from the spam call filter company, it explained that, right now, we’re sitting pretty at 29.2% – meaning that a little under one-third of all phone calls are spam. This is a terrifying increase from 3.7% in 2017, and the number is only getting higher – up to 44.6% by early 2019.

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At this point, spam calls are more of a minor annoyance in my life than anything else, but that doesn’t mean that spammers aren’t a threat. More and more people are turning away from phone conversations in favour of text-based communication, yet it’s clear the number of spam callers is only rising. A part of me is slightly, if not begrudgingly, impressed by this level of determination. After all, these scammers have it down to a science by now.

One popular technique scammers use is “neighborhood spoofing.” Essentially, the scammer disguises their phone number to look local to the target, increasing the chance of the call being answered. These calls can’t be detected by traditional spam-blocking software, since the fake number isn’t on any blacklists.

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Orion is currently working on a system that will, hopefully, be more effective at blocking these types of calls. “After working closely with several carriers,” says First Orion CEO Charles D. Morgan, “we’ve found that in-network solutions that leverage sophisticated data analysis and machine learning are by far the most accurate way to pinpoint the origin of a call and identify it before it reaches your phone.”

Until then, the best course of action against this oncoming tide of spam calls is to stay aware and avoid answering calls from unknown numbers, even if they appear local. Because unfortunately, it doesn’t look like these scammers are going anywhere any time soon.

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