Waiting for an important phone call isn’t easy today, as most of us experience unwanted calls. The phone rings and you don’t recognize the number, so do you pick it up? Most likely it’s a robocall; automated call which delivers a message, typically a telemarketer or another type of scam. Whether you have a landline or a cell phone, no one can escape the unwanted calls, it’s simply annoying.

Everyone should begin with the ‘Do Not Call Registry.’ By registering all your numbers on this list, it’ll help avoid some telemarketers, though it’s not fool proof. If you continue to experience calls from the same numbers after one month, you should report them with the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) at 1-888-225-5322. Another place to register, which is similar to the Do Not Call Registry is Nomorobo. This service is able to detect, while blocking robocalls from a blacklist of known repeated offenders. Landlines may sign up for free, but cellphone users will have to download the app, and may come with a cost. Many cell phones today have different apps, depending on the type of cell you own, apple or android, most do come with a fee, but as always…do your homework first. Phone companies need to start taking charges into consideration, because they receive enough money through usage of data and taxes; consumers have paid the price, now it’s time for the companies to offer these apps for free.

Signing a petition warding off those pesky robocalls is something we should all do. At www.endrobocalls.org you will find a consumer petition, which will put pressure on phone carriers to end unwanted calls and scams. These companies should provide all consumers some type of protection by using newer technology with free call-blocking on phones and, or services. Currently, when I receive an unknown number I do a search, putting in the number at www.whitepages.com or www.zabasearch.com . This usually tells me online if it’s a telemarketer or possibly consumer’s complaints about being scammed. Then I immediately block the number from my phone. Sometimes shortly after doing this another number begins to call and I never think twice, I just block it. Rejecting unknown numbers which don’t leave messages can’t hurt. At www.consumerunion.org/end-robocalls/solutions you can find out more information as to helping end these types of calls. The FCC has authorized phone companies to use call-blocking technologies, but it hasn’t been offered free to consumers yet and it’s time they did.

For now, it’s up to us to be extra cautious of those incoming calls with unknown numbers; don’t answer them. Also, give out your number sparingly and resist those companies that say they require a phone number for services; it’s not always true. As for me, I immediately tell my Dr.’s offices, Salons and others I see to always leave a message, as I’m unable to answer the phone at times. This is important to let them know, as it helps screen incoming numbers I’m unaware of. We are our own advocates in this crazy world of technology, so be safe and beware.

Make your week count.