AT&T Debuts 'Call Protect' Service to Protect Against Robocalls

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    AT&T today announced Call Protect, a complimentary service aimed at protecting its users from automated phone calls, also referred to as robocalls. The service debuts five months after the U.S. Federal Communications asked wireless companies to offer free robocall blocking services.

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    The service offers two solutions to stop robocalls. It can automatically block numbers suspected of fraud at the network level, preventing them from reaching your phone entirely, or it can deliver the call from a suspected number with a fraud warning on the display. The latter feature requires the user to be in an area with HD Voice support.

    AT&T customers can activate the feature via their MyAT&T account or by downloading the AT&T Call Protect app. The app allows users to look at call details, receive spam warnings, block specific numbers and turn on and off Automatic Fraud Blocking.

    The service requires an iOS or Android smartphone eligible for HD Voice. AT&T also warns that automatic blocking may block wanted phone calls, which means users would potentially have to manually whitelist certain numbers to make sure they aren't blocked.

    In August, it was reported that Apple was one of over 30 companies that joined the "Robocall Strike Force," a join effort aimed at stopping robocalls. At the time, the FCC said that most of the complaints it receives are regarding robocalls. The U.S. has other measures in place to prevent robocalls, including companies having to ask permission before calling and allowing people to add their number to the FTC's Do Not Call list.

    AT&T Call Protect is available on the App Store for free [Direct Link]

    Article Link: AT&T Debuts 'Call Protect' Service to Protect Against Robocalls
     
  2. Relentless Power macrumors Penryn

    Relentless Power

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    Good for AT&T. Robocalls are increasing every day in my area. I like to think my number is fairly private and yet, I still receive one/two calls a week. More carriers (If they Haven't already) need to congregate and move forward with blocking this garbage.

    I know there are free applications to assist in deflecting these calls, but carriers should implement something to throttle robo calls, as ceasing scam calls will likely never be fully successful, as they will find another way to manipulate the caller.
     
  3. dacreativeguy macrumors 68020

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    A single typo changes the whole meaning of this article: complimentary vs. complementary

    AT&T today announced Call Protect, a complementary service
     
  4. Mlrollin91 macrumors G5

    Mlrollin91

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    Just signed up now. Hopefully just signing up and not needing to keep the app on my device will help. Been getting 1-2 calls a day lately. It use to be 1-2 a month. Hopefully this will reduce the calls. It says that I only need the app to manually block calls. We shall see. If this works, it might be the first time I actually ever thank AT&T.
     
  5. ip67 macrumors regular

    ip67

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    #5
    Spam calls and robo calls are so bad that's why I always give out my disposable Google voice # for practically every thing now days.
     
  6. macduke macrumors G3

    macduke

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    Hey you guys, AT&T actually did something customer friendly for a change!

    *waits to see how long before someone realizes this app somehow compromises customer privacy in some major unforeseen way for profit*
     
  7. PhillyGuy72 macrumors 65816

    PhillyGuy72

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    #7
    Nice, I downloaded it and se what happens. I NEVER give out my cell phone number to stores, apps that claim they require them, social media, etc etc or never fall for that text to some random sting of numbers Text "'OFFER' to 983892" (for example), but it simply doesn't matter. These dirtbags somehow find my phone number. the calls have been much more frequent lately! I have a ton of junk numbers on my "Block List"
     
  8. Mlrollin91 macrumors G5

    Mlrollin91

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    The nice thing is the app might not be needed! You don't need it to sign up. Only to manually block calls.
     
  9. jimthing macrumors 65816

    jimthing

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    What are these robo calls?
    I don't think we have them in the UK?
     
  10. elvisimprsntr macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Unfortunately, number blocking at the network level has one major weakness. The robo callers use a random unique number each time they call. I get calls from a debt reduction service (not sure how or why, since I have no debt) once a week. Each time it is a different number. They are supposed to automatically add the number to the do not call list if the pound (#) symbol is pressed repeatidly, but this particuar pesky company does not honor that method.

    Also, can we add non-profit organizations and political campaigns to the blocked call feature? Oh wait, in the US they are exempt from do not call lists.
     
  11. shinji macrumors 65816

    shinji

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    When I open the app and login, it just keeps saying, "We are setting up your account. This may take a while. Please be patient."

    When I login to my AT&T account, I can see that the feature was activated...but I can't get into the app?
     
  12. budselectjr macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    Someone puts together a system for whatever reason(sales, scam) to dial every number and will play a automated message of your choosing if anybody picks up.

    If someone picks up it will usually transfer you to a person to talk to. It saves time for people operating call centers because the human workers time is not wasted dialing numbers, not getting pickups.
     
  13. jimthing macrumors 65816

    jimthing

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    Oh right, we get those here too, but very few and far between. The UK has tight rules on spam calls anyway.

    e.g. the Telephone Preference Service, TPS for short, one can sign up to, to block most of these, and non compliance by companies will get them fined large amounts. Still get bioler room teams working abroad trying call dumb people into buying worthless shares, with some also doing robo openers, or dialling 10 numbers at once, cutting 9 off when the first is answered by someone receiving them.

    Still rare though, unless you get on lots if spammers lists by actually engaging with previous ones – always just immediately hang up, never talk to them ever, helps stop this!
    --- Post Merged, Dec 20, 2016 ---
    I can't believe you US guys have to suffer sometimes 1-2 PER DAY!!
    Yikes, I'd go mad.
     
  14. budselectjr macrumors 6502a

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    We allegedly have laws against it over here as well but they do nothing and it only seems to be getting worse.
     
  15. Bryan Bowler macrumors 68040

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    #15
    I'm surprised that AT&T did something good for the consumer. First time I've seen that in years!
     
  16. Shirasaki macrumors 604

    Shirasaki

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    For me, robo call is rare in Australia.
    But phone number is sort of disposable anyway.
    And I could download VOIP apps to subscribe for a disposable number if I ever need one.
     
  17. WBRacing macrumors 6502a

    WBRacing

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    #17
    Sadly we do.
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/03/12/nuisance_call_ico_raids_call_centre/

    On my android phone it screens all calls and blocks known numbers without my ever hearing about it - calls and texts are now filtered. I've also set a wild card block on the Liverpool area code as several times a day a dodgy company up there kept calling with a slightly different number each time.
     
  18. Cloudkicker macrumors 6502

    Cloudkicker

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    #18
    How does it work when necessary robocalls come in, like from your child's school saying:
    "[Blank] hasn't show up to school yet", or "Your friendly* neighborhood cable company technician sees you have a scheduled appointment today at [Blank] o'clock"? Blocked?

    [*friendly antedotical concept]
     
  19. iGeek2014 macrumors 68020

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    I've had a fair few unknown numbers here in the U.K. from spam companies.

    A lot of the time they fake STD Codes i.e. Shows as a call from London 020 7 but really is a private mobile number leading to overage charges as they aren't included in my tariff.
     
  20. WarHeadz macrumors 6502a

    WarHeadz

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  21. budselectjr macrumors 6502a

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    Those numbers most likely won't be flagged at the system level as I doubt people would report them as abusive.
     
  22. fitshaced macrumors 68000

    fitshaced

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    It seems to me that more and more our phone numbers and email addresses are more about dealing with cold calling sales people, spam or some subscribed news letters from corporations. We don't seem to own our own addresses. We instead find more ways to be contacted through facebook, whatsapp etc. These are also becoming more spam riddled and where they are not, they probably will be. It's like always having to be on the move to avoid the pressure from capitalism.
     
  23. macTW Suspended

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    Oct 17, 2016
    #23
    Some robot calls are helpful, such as (ancient times here) the library notifying you of a book you requested being available, or a reminder for a dentist appointment you made 5 months prior. It'd be a shame if those get lost in this.
     
  24. Relentless Power macrumors Penryn

    Relentless Power

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    #24
    That's an interesting point. But, I think you're correct, in the sense that technically Robo calls coming from your local physician or are a general reminder is considered a Robo call. If they use current and local phone numbers, then perhaps those calls would still exist.
     
  25. pat500000 macrumors G3

    pat500000

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