The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #31
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    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    My parents keep getting them from people claiming to be TalkTalk and telling them there router is faulty and they need to download some stuff to their computer. Lucky the first time a computer savvy friend was there who took the phone and blasted the caller for trying to con a couple of pensioners. Dad just hangs up on them now
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    Quote Originally Posted by comicshorse View Post
    My parents keep getting them from people claiming to be TalkTalk and telling them there router is faulty and they need to download some stuff to their computer. Lucky the first time a computer savvy friend was there who took the phone and blasted the caller for trying to con a couple of pensioners. Dad just hangs up on them now
    PAYG (pay as you go) is critical. PAYG is designed for poor people. Scammers target the rich, because they have money that they might be conned out of. If you don't want spam, switch to PAYG.

    Then the spammers will switch too, but they'll have to filter out the poor people, and that will be *interesting*.

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  3. - Top - End - #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by truemane View Post
    I used to get calls from people wanting to "update our Google listing." That one was always fun too. 'You're calling from Google? You're not? What does this cost?'

    Good times.
    Oh, I love when the Google listing people call!

    "No, we don't have google, I'm not interested. No, we don't want to buy a google. We're already in the googles, you say? Can you take us off?" They usually hang up by that point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Oh, I love when the Google listing people call!

    "No, we don't have google, I'm not interested. No, we don't want to buy a google. We're already in the googles, you say? Can you take us off?" They usually hang up by that point.

    Oh by Crom, that makes me want to answer phone calls again!
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  5. - Top - End - #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2D8HP View Post
    Oh by Crom, that makes me want to answer phone calls again!
    Seriously, having fun with the spammers - when they're real people, not robots - brings a touch of joy to my bitter, blackened husk of a heart.

    I remember one gag I pulled back when I was a teenager. Don't know how I got onto a list, but somehow, people started calling my parents' house asking for me. And since I was in high school, my parents decided that I should field this crap myself. So they called, and started into the usual shpiel, "I'm calling to offer you the such-and-such credit card-"

    At which point I interrupted with a familiar and unmistakable phrase. "Yes, I'd like to order a pizza for delivery, please."

    What happened next still makes me smile. The poor fool kept trying to jump into his script about credit cards. Each time, I would interrupt with my pizza order. "A large cheese, please." "No, no other toppings." "Oh, and breadsticks!" "No peppers in the box, please. I know you do that sometimes, but please, it's a turn-off for me."

    Guy got so frustrated he handed me over to a supervisor. I proceeded to place my order again. Supervisor guaranteed me it would arrive in thirty minutes.

    It did not arrive in thirty minutes. To this day, I do not have that credit card. That supervisor lied to me. About pizza.

    I've used multiple iterations of that gag since then. (Or I used to, before the robots.) Carry on a completely different conversation than the telemarketer. Confuses the fool out of them. Know what I've learned from this?

    A lot of them aren't allowed to hang up unless you say "No."

    Dwell on that thought for a moment. You thought they had the power because they keep calling you? Oh, no. You, my friend, you have the power, because they're not allowed to hang up without a definite "No" on your part.

    Want to tell some poor unsuspecting fool about how horrible your week has been? Want to subject some unwitting mook to a horror story about your evening post-burritos? Want to describe the surgery in awe-inspiring detail? Do it. Live the dream.

    They will learn.
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    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    The problem with that kind of thing is that you have to spend time on it.

    Funniest spam story I have, not counting things I just heard or read about, is for email rather than phone. I got a pretty typical "we have all this money to give you, we just need a few things first" scam message. The funny part was that the supposed source of this money was a government fund for compensating victims of email scams.
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  7. - Top - End - #37
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    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    What really blows to me is that we get all these spam calls from local numbers. I just avoid any number I don't know now, and I think that's a pretty unfortunate state of affairs. Maybe someone should contact the FCC......... oh right.

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    Quote Originally Posted by halfeye View Post
    PAYG (pay as you go) is critical. PAYG is designed for poor people. Scammers target the rich, because they have money that they might be conned out of. If you don't want spam, switch to PAYG.

    Then the spammers will switch too, but they'll have to filter out the poor people, and that will be *interesting*.

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    I have a pay as you go phone, and I still get some junk calls. Of course, it was my phone number for my dog sitting and math tutoring businesses back when I used to have those, so it probably ended up in whatever databases you end up in when you list a business phone number on various government forms. (Also on assorted real-life bulletin boards back when I was actually running this business, because people will call a total stranger to deal with their dog and/or children based on who has business cards up at the local coffee shop, but that was years ago.)

    I get fewer than my dad does, but his cell phone number (contract) used to be his landline number, which seems to mean extra junk calls. His current landline number (which was basically free with his cable/mobile/internet/etc. package) gets so many that he's just turned off the ringer and checks for messages every now and then, since he doesn't give out that number.


    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Oh, I love when the Google listing people call!

    "No, we don't have google, I'm not interested. No, we don't want to buy a google. We're already in the googles, you say? Can you take us off?" They usually hang up by that point.
    That sounds DELIGHTFUL. If I didn't pay for my phone service by the minute, I'd be tempted to take that up. (I have an old T-Mobile prepaid plan where you can put $100 at a time on the phone, calls are 10 cents a minute, and your minutes don't expire for a year. Since I hate talking on the phone, I generally spend about $200/year on my cell phone bill.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    Seriously, having fun with the spammers - when they're real people, not robots - brings a touch of joy to my bitter, blackened husk of a heart.

    I remember one gag I pulled back when I was a teenager. Don't know how I got onto a list, but somehow, people started calling my parents' house asking for me. And since I was in high school, my parents decided that I should field this crap myself. So they called, and started into the usual shpiel, "I'm calling to offer you the such-and-such credit card-"

    At which point I interrupted with a familiar and unmistakable phrase. "Yes, I'd like to order a pizza for delivery, please."

    What happened next still makes me smile. The poor fool kept trying to jump into his script about credit cards. Each time, I would interrupt with my pizza order. "A large cheese, please." "No, no other toppings." "Oh, and breadsticks!" "No peppers in the box, please. I know you do that sometimes, but please, it's a turn-off for me."

    Guy got so frustrated he handed me over to a supervisor. I proceeded to place my order again. Supervisor guaranteed me it would arrive in thirty minutes.

    It did not arrive in thirty minutes. To this day, I do not have that credit card. That supervisor lied to me. About pizza.

    I've used multiple iterations of that gag since then. (Or I used to, before the robots.) Carry on a completely different conversation than the telemarketer. Confuses the fool out of them. Know what I've learned from this?

    A lot of them aren't allowed to hang up unless you say "No."

    Dwell on that thought for a moment. You thought they had the power because they keep calling you? Oh, no. You, my friend, you have the power, because they're not allowed to hang up without a definite "No" on your part.

    Want to tell some poor unsuspecting fool about how horrible your week has been? Want to subject some unwitting mook to a horror story about your evening post-burritos? Want to describe the surgery in awe-inspiring detail? Do it. Live the dream.

    They will learn.

    I've also heard of people saying things like "hang on, let me go find a pen" and then wandering off for 5 or 10 minutes. "Oh, ok I've found one now. So, you were saying something about the googles? Ooops, wait, now I need to go get the dog back inside since I think I hear the mailman...." 5 or 10 minutes pass "Well, that got complicated! Let's just say that I never knew the insides of a vole could get quite that all over patio furniture before. So, about those googles, I'm ready to write it down now...oh, wait, this pen is out of ink. Hang on...."

  9. - Top - End - #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by halfeye View Post
    PAYG (pay as you go) is critical. PAYG is designed for poor people.
    Huh, weird. There're more than enough places on earth, you land at the airport, first thing you'll meet after claiming your baggage are people from the local major telecom brands that will nearly force a PAYG Sim card on you, so you can stay mobile when out of country/in their country, coupled to public WLAN access, all the usual. (I still got an PAYG Sim card from Estonia in my iPad, as that offers more LTE EU roaming data than my regular contract card...)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    Seriously, having fun with the spammers - when they're real people, not robots - brings a touch of joy to my bitter, blackened husk of a heart.
    It can be fun. The best I've had were two cold calls - one from a tobacco lobbying group making some interesting health claims about tobacco that I tore into, and one from someone claiming to be a carpet cleaning company that I managed to drag on for about five minutes by asking about a series of increasingly unlikely floor surfaces and whether they could clean them, starting with chrome steel flooring and gradually ramping up in implausibility to outright packed earth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Knaight View Post
    It can be fun. The best I've had were two cold calls - one from a tobacco lobbying group making some interesting health claims about tobacco that I tore into, and one from someone claiming to be a carpet cleaning company that I managed to drag on for about five minutes by asking about a series of increasingly unlikely floor surfaces and whether they could clean them, starting with chrome steel flooring and gradually ramping up in implausibility to outright packed earth.
    Look, this cleansing agent will work so well, even on packed earth, you'll be able to eat right off the planet's core.
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  12. - Top - End - #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knaight View Post
    It can be fun. The best I've had were two cold calls - one from a tobacco lobbying group making some interesting health claims about tobacco that I tore into, and one from someone claiming to be a carpet cleaning company that I managed to drag on for about five minutes by asking about a series of increasingly unlikely floor surfaces and whether they could clean them, starting with chrome steel flooring and gradually ramping up in implausibility to outright packed earth.
    Ironically, one of my best was entirely by accident - I didn't realize until later what I had done.

    This was also in my teenage years. At that time, while I was great at grasping abstract mathematical concepts, concrete measurements eluded me. My attempts to "eyeball" things like distance, size, and weight were hilariously off.

    So, a phone call comes in from a military recruiter. Once again, my awesome parents decide that I'm old enough that this shouldn't be their problem, and hand the phone off to me. Now, despite the person I am now, the person I was then was legitimately trying to be helpful and cooperative with this recruiter. That me was genuinely trying to answer questions. Unfortunately, the recruiter asked for some basic physical information over the phone.

    "Weight? Oh, couple hundred pounds, maybe two or three, I guess. Height? Four... I'd say four feet, give or take an inch or two."

    I honestly wouldn't have blamed the guy for assuming I was jerking him around. It wasn't until later, when my parents - who had been listening and holding in their laughter - explained to me just how far off I'd been that I appreciated his perplexed reactions.
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  13. - Top - End - #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by noctum View Post
    What really blows to me is that we get all these spam calls from local numbers. I just avoid any number I don't know now, and I think that's a pretty unfortunate state of affairs. Maybe someone should contact the FCC......... oh right.
    Most of them are spoofed numbers fed through software-based phone systems; they reflect as some random number in (insert your local area code here), but the number your phone gives as the call source doesn't really need to have anything to do with the actual location of the caller. It's probably illegal, but you're talking about operations performing probably-illegal automated calling or trying to perform outright scams already, so what do they care.

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    Man I had like 4 automated calls today. Unfortunately though it annoys me less to pick up a call I know is going to be spam than to let a phone ring out. Luckily my cell doesn't get them. When I get my own place I'm not even going to install a landline.
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  15. - Top - End - #45
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    I live in the UK, and I don't get spam calls on my mobile, except from my mobile phone provider, of course.

    My mother has a landline at her house and she gets one or two spam calls a day, but she's signed up to Telephone Preference Service (no spam calls) so the only ones she gets are from abroad, and her handset identifies them readily enough.

    I took one at her house when I was visiting, and yes, he claimed to be calling from Windows to tell me about a virus I had. I wasn't convinced.

    Having worked for a company that deals with financial fraud, I've had a customer who was calling back because she'd found her bank details now, and wanted to help the nice indian man protect her account. It makes me feel ill to know that there are people who will happily scam pensioners who don't know enough about the internet and the modern world to understand to trust nobody who asks you for that stuff.

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    Won't do much for robocalls, but for people calls, you can always go by the "We don't use..." method.

    "Hi, I'm Christine, calling from XX Hygiene Essentials..."
    "I'm sorry to cut you off, but we don't use hygiene essentials."
    "These are articles like soap and cleaning products."
    "We don't use soap and cleaning products."
    "You don't use cleaning products?"
    "Nope. We like our dirt."
    "I see... Well in that case, have a nice day."
    "You too, Christine."

    "Hi, Im Chris from XX Stream, may I speak to the person in charge of beverages and refreshements?"
    "We don't use refreshments for our staff."
    "Don't they get thirsty then? We are prepared to offer your company free beverages..."
    "Our staff is not allowed to drink beverages. Only tap water."
    "I see... We can deliver mineral water as well..."
    "No thanks, the PH value is much too low in that garbage.""
    "Oookay. Thanks for your time then... Have a nice day."
    "You too, Chris."

    "Hi, I'm calling from company X. Your company recently participated in one of our surveys, and we would like to send you a box of chocolate to thank you. Could I speak to the person in charge of Toner Cartridge aquisition?"
    "I'm sorry, but we don't use toner cartridges."
    "Don't you use printers."
    "Sure, but we just throw them out when they're out of toner."

    "Hello, I am Jonathan calling from X. We are offering companies in your area courses in personnel training and development. We would..."
    "I'm sorry to interrupt, but we don't use personnel training and development. We prefer to keep our staff just like they were in 1980."

    "Hello, I would like to speak to the person in charge of advertising."
    "I'm sorry, but our company doesn't use advertising."
    "You don't advertise? Then how do you get new customers?"
    "We like our present customers, and don't want any new ones. We intend to grow old and die with our customers."

    "Hello, this is Gia from Analysis Institute X. May I speak to someone over the age of 18 who drives a car?""
    "I'm sorry, but we don't use cars."
    "Then how do you get to work?"
    "We are required to ride bikes by company policy. Our company is very environmentally conscious."
    "Oh, how fascinating. Well not much point in me asking then. You have a nice day."
    "You too, Gia."
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  17. - Top - End - #47
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    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    The only ones I regularly get are from health insurance companies, and then only with people, never from robots. Maybe one a week. I once got one from some Indian guy who claimed to be from tech support. I actually fell for that one, since I had myself called a support company the day before and they said they'd get back to me. Of course, then they wanted remote access to my computer and for me to tell them my passwords, so I hung up.
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    Lately my employer issued cell phone with a 415 (San Francisco) area code, has been getting lots of pre-recorded messages of what I think is Chinese.

    And there's always lots of detailed info about the results of other peoples medical test results.

    I think there's lots of "fishing" for people who answer calls.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Misereor View Post
    Won't do much for robocalls, but for people calls, you can always go by the "We don't use..." method.
    I pulled this out at Barnes & Noble one when the casheir would not stop trying to get me to sign up for their rewards whatever.

    "What's your email address?"
    Oh, I don't have email.

    Looked right in his eyes too. What was he gonna do, accuse a paying customer of lying?
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  20. - Top - End - #50
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    I get robo calls for ridiculous things like there being a "problem with my home-owner's insurance" (I live in an apartment) or asking me to verify information in my account at some bank that I know I've never had an account with. My favorite spam calls are the ones that start by saying "This is not a sales call! You have been referred by a friend or neighbor!"

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    Yes. Mostly hangups since I call screen.

    Lots of health insurance, home repair/maintenance, and around election season polls/infomercials.

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    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    Does the PAYG thing actually make a difference? While I understand that it generally implies that you have less income to lose to a scam, there could also be a perception that people who are lower on the income scale are also less sophisticated when it come to spotting and avoiding those scams. In terms of more conventional scams, there are plenty of real people in prison who decided that scamming a large number of lower-middle income folks out of what little they have was just as viable as trying to get a lot out of a few more affluent victims.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    Oh my Me, yes. So many. Nearly on a daily basis. Mostly robots, too.

    My country has a "Do Not Call" registry, but apparently that only applies to calls involving a live person, so robocalls pass unhindered.
    I always assumed it was more a matter of people who run scams not caring about what's legal or not

    Quote Originally Posted by 137ben View Post
    My favorite spam calls are the ones that start by saying "This is not a sales call! You have been referred by a friend or neighbor!"
    "This is not a sales call. This is about phishing and that's all that it's about."

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    Quote Originally Posted by tonberrian View Post
    Man I had like 4 automated calls today. Unfortunately though it annoys me less to pick up a call I know is going to be spam than to let a phone ring out. Luckily my cell doesn't get them. When I get my own place I'm not even going to install a landline.
    I get them on my cell. It's not a cell vs landline thing

  25. - Top - End - #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    Seriously, having fun with the spammers - when they're real people, not robots - brings a touch of joy to my bitter, blackened husk of a heart.
    One of the few I have played (I kept my temper with them better in those days) was someone trying to sell me a conservatory. I kept him on the line for 15 minutes before telling him that I lived in a second floor (third floor to USians) flat. To give the guy due credit, he took it very well.

    Mind you, my absolute favorite was the guy who, finding out that I was not interested and in fact fed up of getting these calls, calmly gave me the Telephone Preference Service contact details.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    One of the few I have played (I kept my temper with them better in those days) was someone trying to sell me a conservatory. I kept him on the line for 15 minutes before telling him that I lived in a second floor (third floor to USians) flat. To give the guy due credit, he took it very well.
    Hold on just a damn second. UK has spam callers that try to get you to buy conservatories?!? Even y'alls spammers are higher class than ours!
    Last edited by Peelee; 2018-03-29 at 01:23 PM. Reason: Typo corrections
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    The trick with that scam - there are several actually, but the biggest giveaway - is that they don't actually say they're from Microsoft, the company that makes many pieces of software including Windows. They say that they're from Windows. Not Windows Support, or Windows Tech Support, or the Windows Tech Department - just Windows.
    I'm afraid you're quite wrong here. The ones I get all begin with "This Microsoft tech support calling about your Windows computer. You have virus and will go to jail if you don't let me fix it."

  28. - Top - End - #58
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    2D8HP's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    San Francisco Bay area
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    I received a spam text to my work phone today that read:

    FRM:[some phone number]@[some website]
    MSG:Wells Fargo Blocked Card
    www.[something]-verification.com

    I don't have a Wells Fargo card, nor do I use my work phone for financial stuff.

    "Nice" try.

  29. - Top - End - #59
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2018

    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    PAYG (pay as you go) is critical. PAYG is designed for poor people. Scammers target the rich, because they have money that they might be conned out of. If you don't want spam, switch to PAYG.

    Then the spammers will switch too, but they'll have to filter out the poor people, and that will be *interesting*.

  30. - Top - End - #60
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    UK
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Do you get spam calls?

    I get a more upmarket form of spam call on my mobile (which is PAYG as it happens) but it probably requires a bit of background...
    I used to be an IT contractor which meant I had my own company and my mobile number was listed as a director's number; my brother now has the company (electrical engineering contractor) but I am still a director (UK legal reasons) tough I have not been the primary contact in years.

    So, what I get as spam calls is a mixture of:
    1. Companies trying to check details for updating the listing in online directories.
    2. Companies trying to sell telecom services.
    3. Companies trying to conduct surveys of local businesses, ostensibly for the local authority.
    4. Companies trying to sell financial services (these can actually be aimed at IT contractors).
    and occasionally companies trying to sell other things.

    Normally the personal spam (about accidents I haven't had) come as texts not calls.
    Last edited by Khedrac; 2018-03-29 at 02:43 AM.

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