Have you noticed an onslaught of scam calls on your phone and have heard one too many times from the “CRA”?!  New rules starting today are aimed at improving things for folks.

 

Canada’s telecommunications regulator, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), says it wants Canadians to be better protected against “nuisance” calls that are unsolicited and illegitimate so now telecommunications providers in Canada must put in place systems that help block scammers from calling you.

On top of the frustration factor of these scam calls, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre has reported that phone scams bilked Canadians out of an estimated $24 million between Jan. 1 and Oct. 31, 2019, so there are many reasons why this has to be addressed.

The new systems will not be foolproof, but will implement new features that mean all calls will be blocked with numbers of more than 15 digits as well as those numbers that can’t be dialled (such as a string of letters or 000-000-0000).

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It is important to note that not all telecommunications companies will be managing the new rules the same.  For example, Rogers and Bell will be implementing the call blocking technology but some other telecommunications companies will offer this new blocking as  a “filtering service” to subscribers that provide more advanced call-management features.

GOOD NEWS?

Experts in telecommunications say that this will cause a huge decrease in scam calls.  Fraud experts however, are a little more sceptical saying it will help but my no means be fool-proof as it will only block calls from blatantly fake numbers (many calls are made by fraudsters “spoofing” real numbers ).

OTHER TIPS FOR AVOIDING SCAMS ON THE PHONE (hang up if this happens)

- An automated voice or message starts which may ask to you press a button on your phone when you pick up

- The caller is authoritative, demanding, and possibly threatening

- The caller demands personal information or financial information

- The caller asks for money, usually in the form of bitcoin or gift cards

If you DO think you have received a scam call, you are encouraged to report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.

 

BOTTOM LINE – Things are changing in the telecommunication industry now to address issues and further action is expected around Sept. 2020 to address the “spoof” phone calls which will allow phone users to be able to trace back origins of shady callers.

To check out the full plan of action by the CRTC go HERE.

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