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Nearly half of all mobile calls in 2019 will be from scammers

In their 2018 Scam Call Trends and Projections Report, the company First Orion emphasized the need for new technologies to combat the rapidly growing incidence of scam calls. Unless drastic measures are taken, First Orion warns that around 45 percent of all mobile calls made in the year 2019 will come from scammers.

First Orion provides phone call transparency solutions for tens of millions of mobile subscribers across the United States. The team analyzed billions of phone calls received by their clients over the last 18 months and found a shocking jump in the number of calls that were placed by telephone scammers.

The investigation revealed that in 2017, 3.7 percent of the calls analyzed for the study were robocalls. By 2018, this figure jumped to 29.2 percent, and is expected to reach 44.6 percent by early 2019.

There are a number of strategies that are used by scammers to get people to pick up the phone, and the most popular technique is known as “neighborhood spoofing.” This happens when a spammer disguises their phone number to make it appear as a local number on the recipient’s caller ID. Matching the area code and 3-digit prefix of the person being called can substantially increase the chances of the robocall getting answered.

According to First Orion, third-party call blocking apps are not effective when legitimate numbers are hijacked because they only block known numbers that belong to scams.

Charles D. Morgan is the CEO and Head Data Scientist of First Orion. He said, “Year after year, the scam call epidemic bombards consumers at record-breaking levels, surpassing the previous year and scammers increasingly invade our privacy at new extremes.”

“Recently, the FCC joined forces with several technology companies, including First Orion, to find a way to combat these calls, but we still see rampant increases.”

“After working closely with several carriers, 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.”

More information can be found on First Orion’s website.

By Chrissy Sexton, Staff Writer

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