Spam Phone Calls... what are my options?

One of the big reasons I was hesitant to get a smart phone is I knew I wanted to use my home phone number… and didn’t want to deal with the spam calls. At least at home I had NoMoRobo which, while imperfect (the phone still rings once) was something.

So I waited for the FCC and cell phone providers to do something… but what it is, I don’t know. I’m now using T-Mobile on RW… do we have their spam call control at work? Do I have to block spam calls one at a time knowing they can spoof any number they want? Is there some setting in Android 10 that can help?


EDIT… as soon as my post went up it had a hot link to How to Stop Unwanted Spam Calls

So I’ll try that.


I’ve been using a near perfect method to block spam calls for the last 8 years, no special services or apps required.

It takes a little time to set this up the first time, but after that is nearly maintenance free. I don’t know if your phone has this feature, but in the volume settings on my phone, I can set the ringer to only sound audibly for “starred” contacts from my phone book. Any other number that calls in will display on the screen if you just happen to be looking at it at that moment, but is eventually timed off to voicemail, and most spam or robo callers won’t bother to leave a message (although there are a few that will, and it’s usually pretty funny listening to their pathetic attempts to reach you, and ~definitely~ fun deleting them.) And, of course, anyone you’ve approved from your contact list gets right through and rings. That’s the tedious part, is going through your entire phone book and setting the star on whatever contacts you want to approve.

Another bright side is you can temporarily approve places to ring through, like your mechanic that you’re waiting for a return call, or whatever else, and remove approval after you’ve concluded your business. Of course, if they call from an unknown back office number, they’ll have to leave a voicemail, which I’ve found is usually just fine anyway. Then you can save the callback number into their contact card, and they’ll be set to call you the next time. If you’re expecting a call from an unknown number, like the pizza delivery guy, you can always switch the volume back to accept calls from any number, and change it back again as soon as your expected call comes through. Very easy.

I used to get several spam calls per week, sometimes several per day. This method put a screeching halt to the problem, and I haven’t been bothered by it since.

Good luck my friend.


I would like the option to block calls from anyone not in my contacts.

That’s how my phone is set up. I don’t know what phone you have, but on my Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, I go to Settings - Sounds and vibration - Do not disturb, then turn that on, then in the Do not disturb menu, go to Allow exceptions, and there is an option “Calls from”, and I choose “Contacts only”. Now, anyone else that calls gets my voicemail and it doesn’t ring.

When you pull down the notification shade, there’s a persistent notification that reminds you that Do not disturb is on, and you’ll still get notifications that people called who aren’t in your contacts…

So, what do you do when you need your phone to be totally silent? Do you have to go in and change the settings every time?

If I want the phone to be totally silent, I turn the volume all the way down using the buttons on the side of the phone. The Do not disturb setting doesn’t change.

Oops, forgot a step in the routine from above…when I go into Settings - Sounds and vibration - Do not disturb - Allow exceptions, I choose Custom, and then I get a menu to choose Contacts only to ring the phone.

The Do not disturb setting survives reboots, so you don’t have to go into Settings every time you restart the phone.

Thank you. I will give it a try.

I have the Moto X4 and am not having much success with this. Somehow the silent mode keeps getting turned off.

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