Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-12-2019, 07:38 PM
WildaBeast's Avatar
WildaBeast is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Folsom, CA
Posts: 203

What's with this wierd number I got a call from?


Today I got a call on my cell phone from a very strange number: +1 33825933151. Yes, that's one too many digits to be a standard US phone number. The caller ID just listed the caller as "United States". It rang twice and then hung up. I assume it was some kind of scam call, but what's up with the strange number?

Also, I accidentally swiped right on the missed call notification, which on the iPhone automatically calls the number back. I immediately hung up, hopefully before the call went through. I've heard some scammers will call and hang up in order to trick people into calling some number that will result in charges on their phone bill (because some people just call back every missed call they get). I home that isn't what I did.
  #2  
Old 06-12-2019, 07:40 PM
manson1972's Avatar
manson1972 is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 11,061
It's my understanding that scammers can put any number they want in there. Sometimes I get calls from "41853" or something similar. I don't answer any calls from numbers that aren't in my contacts already.
  #3  
Old 06-13-2019, 07:10 AM
mcgato is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Hoboken
Posts: 1,343
I got one the other day where the area code started with a zero. I did not answer.
  #4  
Old 06-13-2019, 08:13 AM
GaryM's Avatar
GaryM is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: St. Louis, MO 50mi. West
Posts: 5,132
I had a call last week where the display number was 1-111-111-1111. It was flagged by ATT Call Protect as possible SPAM. Ya think?
  #5  
Old 06-13-2019, 08:28 AM
DesertDog is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, Ariz.
Posts: 5,477
I just smile at the ones that are [myAC]-[myPrefix]-[fourRandomDigits]. I don't know anyone with my area code and prefix combination* but I suppose there are enough who do and pick it up in case it's Mother calling to make it worth while.

*Not even DesertRoomie and our cell numbers are on the same account and activated at the same time.
  #6  
Old 06-13-2019, 08:29 AM
Dewey Finn is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 28,213
Quote:
Originally Posted by WildaBeast View Post
Today I got a call on my cell phone from a very strange number: +1 33825933151.
Weirdly, I had a call at 1:05am today from the same number. Didn't answer it of course. And googling the number results in this thread as the number one result, but also results in one of those robocall reporting pages where about fifty other people reported calls from that number.
  #7  
Old 06-13-2019, 08:36 AM
Jasmine's Avatar
Jasmine is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 1,972
It's probably weird because, when the spammer was punching in some random spoof to appear on your Caller ID, he accidentally hit an extra key.
__________________
"The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance -- it is the illusion of knowledge."
--Daniel J Boorstin
  #8  
Old 06-13-2019, 10:09 AM
jz78817 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Under Oveur & over Unger
Posts: 11,790
Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertDog View Post
I just smile at the ones that are [myAC]-[myPrefix]-[fourRandomDigits]. I don't know anyone with my area code and prefix combination* but I suppose there are enough who do and pick it up in case it's Mother calling to make it worth while.

*Not even DesertRoomie and our cell numbers are on the same account and activated at the same time.
I'm surprised they even bother trying that junk. in a day where damn near everyone is using mobile phones, the notion of two people having the same exchange/prefix being "local" to each other is obsolete.
  #9  
Old 06-13-2019, 10:30 AM
Knowed Out's Avatar
Knowed Out is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: North Kakkalakee
Posts: 14,288
I got a voice mail on my work phone the other day, sent with HIGH PRIORITY!

The caller was from Anchorage Alaska and launched into a rant about how he and his family were being persecuted by the CIA and listed all the illegalities one by one. I don't know how my work number wound up on his contact list. Maybe Snopes has something about it.
  #10  
Old 06-13-2019, 11:18 AM
WildaBeast's Avatar
WildaBeast is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Folsom, CA
Posts: 203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
Weirdly, I had a call at 1:05am today from the same number. Didn't answer it of course. And googling the number results in this thread as the number one result, but also results in one of those robocall reporting pages where about fifty other people reported calls from that number.
Interesting. When I googled it yesterday I got absolutely no results, which is partly why I started this thread. I guess other people must have reported calls from that number since then.

Edit: Oh, actually I do get results if I leave off the +1.

Last edited by WildaBeast; 06-13-2019 at 11:21 AM.
  #11  
Old 06-13-2019, 11:45 AM
ftg's Avatar
ftg is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Not the PNW :-(
Posts: 19,285
I have VoIP. There's an entry in my settings where I can put in the number I want to show up on caller ID. It doesn't have to the same as out number. It doesn't have to look like a normal number.

It's just that easy to fake a number. It's a lot like return addresses on envelopes.
  #12  
Old 06-13-2019, 12:26 PM
WildaBeast's Avatar
WildaBeast is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Folsom, CA
Posts: 203
My concern actually was that maybe the scam was that if someone blindly calls the number back they get a recording like "Press 1 to consent to having an exorbitant charge added to your bill", and the phone goes ahead and sends a 1 because of the extra digit in the callback number. Although I honestly don't know if phones would handle the extra digit that way or not.
  #13  
Old 06-13-2019, 03:26 PM
Hari Seldon is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Trantor
Posts: 12,777
I know that in 1991, a hotel (Holiday Inn?) in Evanston, IL, told me that their number was 1+area code+ evanston. When I pointed out that that was too many digits, the desk clerk told me the extra digit was ignored. I have no idea if that is still true.
  #14  
Old 06-13-2019, 03:35 PM
pulykamell is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: SW Side, Chicago
Posts: 47,245
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hari Seldon View Post
I know that in 1991, a hotel (Holiday Inn?) in Evanston, IL, told me that their number was 1+area code+ evanston. When I pointed out that that was too many digits, the desk clerk told me the extra digit was ignored. I have no idea if that is still true.
I still hear ads in the radio with phone number with too many digits, so I believe that is still true. See: the obnoxious Kars 4 Kids. It sounds like the latest version of the jingle drops the final “s,” but that’s still one too many digits.
  #15  
Old 06-13-2019, 07:38 PM
K2500 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 524
I've recieved many calls from a known caller with an extra digit. They were calling out with a calling card from an extension that wasn't allowed inbound calls. It always showed up as +18AAA-EEE-XXXX
  #16  
Old 06-13-2019, 07:56 PM
CookingWithGas's Avatar
CookingWithGas is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Tysons Corner, VA, USA
Posts: 13,118
Quote:
Originally Posted by WildaBeast View Post
Today I got a call on my cell phone from a very strange number: +1 33825933151. Yes, that's one too many digits to be a standard US phone number. The caller ID just listed the caller as "United States".
I have heard of a "one ring" scam where someone calls, lets it ring once, and hopes you'll call back. It turns out to be one of those numbers where you get billed for calling it. But the number you have makes no sense as a U.S. number. Without the initial 1 I would have said it's from France.
  #17  
Old 06-13-2019, 08:51 PM
Spiderman's Avatar
Spiderman is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: somewhere East of there
Posts: 10,497
As others have stated, it's trivially easy to spoof caller ID. That being said, I have received (legit) calls from other countries, mainly India, that look very off because they don't use the same 10-digit format that we do.


Quote:
Originally Posted by WildaBeast View Post
My concern actually was that maybe the scam was that if someone blindly calls the number back they get a recording like "Press 1 to consent to having an exorbitant charge added to your bill", and the phone goes ahead and sends a 1 because of the extra digit in the callback number. Although I honestly don't know if phones would handle the extra digit that way or not.
Depends. Any extra digits entered before the call picks up on the other side are just ignored with tone dialing*. The exception is a spacer like a comma. A comma is a 3(?) second delay.

I had my cell programmed to check my work voice mail. 10-digit #, comma-comma, 1, comma, mailbox #, comma, password #. When I pressed the saved # for my work's VM retrieval it would call in, put in my user name (number) & password, all with appropriate pauses. The next button I had to press was "1 to listen to new messages".


* with old fashioned pulse/rotary phone dialing, extra #s would terminate the call.
  #18  
Old 06-13-2019, 10:39 PM
Riemann's Avatar
Riemann is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Santa Fe, NM, USA
Posts: 7,360
Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertDog View Post
I just smile at the ones that are [myAC]-[myPrefix]-[fourRandomDigits]. I don't know anyone with my area code and prefix combination* but I suppose there are enough who do and pick it up in case it's Mother calling to make it worth while.
When I moved across the country, I thought having a cellphone with a remote area code was a bug. Now I realize it's a feature. It's possible that I might get a valid phone call from an unknown number in the area code where I live; but vanishingly unlikely that I'd ever get a valid call from an unknown number in the area code of my phone number. So my phone is just set up to trash any unknown numbers from the same area code as my phone. It definitely cuts down on spam.
  #19  
Old 06-14-2019, 06:27 AM
CookingWithGas's Avatar
CookingWithGas is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Tysons Corner, VA, USA
Posts: 13,118
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiderman View Post
Any extra digits entered before the call picks up on the other side are just ignored with tone dialing*. The exception is a spacer like a comma. A comma is a 3(?) second delay.
Yes but those extra digits are not transmitted as caller id data. The switch just pays attention to enough digits to complete a call and the rest of it is "played back" to the system that answers the call.
  #20  
Old 06-14-2019, 09:16 AM
DesertDog is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, Ariz.
Posts: 5,477
Kind of like a local HVAC company that advertises their number as 602-CALL-4-AIR
  #21  
Old 06-14-2019, 10:54 AM
Shoeless's Avatar
Shoeless is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: The Sunflower State
Posts: 6,632
Quote:
Originally Posted by pulykamell View Post
I still hear ads in the radio with phone number with too many digits, so I believe that is still true. See: the obnoxious Kars 4 Kids. It sounds like the latest version of the jingle drops the final “s,” but that’s still one too many digits.
I remember an old "In Living Color" sketch that was a spoof of those "psychic hotline" ads. The guy says something like "Call 1-900-RufusKnowsTheFuture... but quit dialing after the first seven letters."
  #22  
Old 06-14-2019, 11:03 AM
guizot is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: An East Hollywood dingbat
Posts: 8,534
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riemann View Post
. . but vanishingly unlikely that I'd ever get a valid call from an unknown number in the area code of my phone number.
Why--are you in the Witness Protection Program or something? Why wouldn't someone from the area where you used to live call you now?
  #23  
Old 06-14-2019, 11:52 AM
Riemann's Avatar
Riemann is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Santa Fe, NM, USA
Posts: 7,360
Quote:
Originally Posted by guizot View Post
Why--are you in the Witness Protection Program or something? Why wouldn't someone from the area where you used to live call you now?
I think you overlooked the "unknown number" part in what I said.
  #24  
Old 06-14-2019, 02:40 PM
guizot is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: An East Hollywood dingbat
Posts: 8,534
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riemann View Post
I think you overlooked the "unknown number" part in what I said.
Well, no, I didn't. An unknown number is an unknown number, regardless of the area code. If I move to a new area code, I'm just as likely to get a call--from, let's say, a friend who has changed their phone number--from the old area code as the new one, (unless I have broken off ties with everyone from that old area). But I get your overall point: Living in a different area code does provide one data point about an unknown number. For me, though--in that situation--I just wouldn't be able to say with such absolute certainty that it couldn't be a person with whom I actually do want to communicate.
  #25  
Old 06-15-2019, 10:54 AM
DesertDog is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mesa, Ariz.
Posts: 5,477
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shoeless View Post
I remember an old "In Living Color" sketch that was a spoof of those "psychic hotline" ads. The guy says something like "Call 1-900-RufusKnowsTheFuture... but quit dialing after the first seven letters."
Ages ago, before ten-digit dialing, the local paper's want ad department number was 444-4444 The radio ads had a jingle that ended with, "Dial four, four, four; four four, four four," then the announcer broke in with, "If that's too difficult to remember, just keep punching four until somebody answers."
  #26  
Old 06-15-2019, 11:48 AM
Anny Middon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,105
I once (possibly twice) got a call where the caller ID was my own name and number. Since anyone with caller ID would (one hopes) know this is not a legit ID, I figured they thought the novelty factor might have people answering.
  #27  
Old 06-15-2019, 06:56 PM
Green Bean is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: NJ, Exit #137
Posts: 12,058
Is anybody getting daily calls from a variety of countries, all of which were formerly in Yugoslavia? Slovenia, Croatia, Macedonia...

I’ve never answered one. Anybody know what these are all about?
  #28  
Old 06-15-2019, 07:28 PM
Musicat is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Sturgeon Bay, WI USA
Posts: 21,080
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anny Middon View Post
I once (possibly twice) got a call where the caller ID was my own name and number. Since anyone with caller ID would (one hopes) know this is not a legit ID, I figured they thought the novelty factor might have people answering.
That's a common scammer technique, and I get that all the time. I'm not sure what the intention is; perhaps they think you will notice only the first few digits, but not the last four. This is called a "neighborhood spoof."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spiderman View Post
... Any extra digits entered before the call picks up on the other side are just ignored with tone dialing*. The exception is a spacer like a comma. A comma is a 3(?) second delay...
I think you are referring to the Hayes modem code for the comma. This was an instruction used by the Hayes command set. It was not transmitted to the phone line, but would cause the modem to pause for a (configurable) time between commands. Whether modern cellphones implement this command set, I don't know, but I doubt it. What would be the point?
Quote:
* with old fashioned pulse/rotary phone dialing, extra #s would terminate the call.
Not in my experience. Extra digits would be ignored, as the phone exchange isn't listening for anything after the significant digits had been processed.
  #29  
Old 06-16-2019, 12:19 AM
Riemann's Avatar
Riemann is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Santa Fe, NM, USA
Posts: 7,360
Quote:
Originally Posted by guizot View Post
Well, no, I didn't. An unknown number is an unknown number, regardless of the area code. If I move to a new area code, I'm just as likely to get a call--from, let's say, a friend who has changed their phone number--from the old area code as the new one...
Well, that's not my experience. For me, by far the most frequent unknown numbers that are genuine callers are people who I have some local business relationship with - a nurse from the doctor's office calls; a plumber I have booked calls to say he's on the way over. Often the caller id in these cases is not the main office number. I think this is true for most people, and this is exactly why the spam callers spoof numbers from your local area code.

Last edited by Riemann; 06-16-2019 at 12:20 AM.
  #30  
Old 06-16-2019, 07:13 AM
PoppaSan's Avatar
PoppaSan is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: West shore Lake Michigan
Posts: 2,277
Quote:
Originally Posted by Musicat View Post
I think you are referring to the Hayes modem code for the comma. This was an instruction used by the Hayes command set. It was not transmitted to the phone line, but would cause the modem to pause for a (configurable) time between commands. Whether modern cellphones implement this command set, I don't know, but I doubt it. What would be the point?
My previous landline phone had this capability built into the phone. I programmed it similar to the other poster with preloading my VM numbers with the appropriate pauses. My new one might also but I never bothered to set it up if it does.
Quote:
Not in my experience. Extra digits would be ignored, as the phone exchange isn't listening for anything after the significant digits had been processed.
I agree with this. I've used redial after I've been into the labyrinth of selections at banks or other businesses and get dropped or lost so that I need to start over. I always have to start at the beginning.
__________________
This place is beginning to feel like a tin foil hat convention.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:46 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright © 2018 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017