Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

TrapCall Service To Bypass Caller ID Blocking

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the anonymity-was-an-illusion-anyway dept.

Privacy 399

cemaco writes in with news that TelTech, developers of the infamous SpoofCard service, have come out with something even more controversial: a set of services for revealing blocked caller ID numbers. The services take advantage of a loophole in the way caller ID blocking works — it has never been effective when calling an 800 number, because the recipient is paying for the call. So TelTech instructs you how to forward blocked calls (transparently) to their 800 number; the call comes back to your phone in seconds with the formerly hidden caller ID revealed. Advocacy groups for victims of domestic violence are concerned. Victims of annoying calls hiding behind caller ID blocking are rejoicing.

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

I don't get it ?? (5, Funny)

OneSmartFellow (716217) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900867)

Advocacy groups for victims of domestic violence are concerned

What about ?

Yeah really (4, Interesting)

brunes69 (86786) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900875)

If you are calling me then I have a right to know who you are AFAIC.

Re:Yeah really (3, Interesting)

chrispatch (578882) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900975)

I agree. If the phone number is blocked I do not answer. I don't talk on the phone to anonymous people. I don't use voice mail either. So you either call from your unblocked phone # that I recognize or I don't answer. Hell I am not really sure why I have a telephone anyway. The number of people I wish to communicate with via voice is a single digit.

Re:Yeah really (4, Funny)

Zerth (26112) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901509)

I do like to communicate with anonymous people, but I only use a single, upraised digit.

Doesn't really come across on the phone, though.

Re:Yeah really (1)

Godwin O'Hitler (205945) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901039)

Or to put it another way, why on earth would anyone even expect me to talk to them if they're not prepared to reveal who they are?

Re:Yeah really (2, Insightful)

Orlando (12257) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901121)

Or to put it another way, why on earth would anyone even expect me to talk to them if they're not prepared to reveal who they are?

It is not necessarily WHO you are but WHERE you are calling from that is the issue here. If I was a battered wife hiding in a refuge, but still wanted to talk to my abusive husband, I would want to know that I can call him but that he can't trace the call back to where I am calling from.

A mobile phone would solve the geographical part of this problem, but would leave the caller open to unwanted return calls. Hiding the number completely leaves the power in the hands of the caller.

Re:Yeah really (5, Insightful)

hummassa (157160) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901159)

If a battered wife wants to talk directly to her abusive husband, then she is absolutely stupid. Sorry. Battered wives should talk to abusive husband thru lawyers and police officers only.

Re:Yeah really (0, Troll)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901265)

Never been involved in anything even remotely emotionally complex, have you?

Re:Yeah really (-1, Flamebait)

cloakable (885764) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901357)

Yes. And if your survival instinct doesn't triumph over it, then I'm sorry to say you're fucking stupid.

Re:Yeah really (5, Informative)

rhaas (804642) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901427)

RTFA. It's court-mandated, they don't have a choice.

Re:Yeah really (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901517)

If a battered wife wants to talk directly to her abusive husband, then she is absolutely stupid. Sorry. Battered wives should talk to abusive husband thru lawyers and police officers only.

If a Slashdot poster doesn't understand why a battered wife might want to talk directly to her kids, then the Slashdot poster is absolutely stupid.

Re:Yeah really (5, Funny)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901591)

Battered wives should talk to abusive husband thru lawyers, police officers and large caliber pistols only.

Fixed that for you ;)

Re:Yeah really (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901461)

A battered wife may need to talk to a relative, call a place of work, someplace where the abuser can hunt down the phone number. I had an abuser who managed to get his hands on the cell phone of someone I knew, and got my number from their cell phone. Now my number is blocked. Now I am safe.

And as for the morons below who are complaining about the wanting to talk, well they have a lot to learn about spousal abuse, and the court systems, and reasons for calling. It's not the place to get into it, but guys, keep talking about the technology and not about things you know absolutely nothing about.

Re:Yeah really (-1, Offtopic)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901579)

Payphone?

Re:I don't get it ?? (4, Informative)

91degrees (207121) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900883)

The problem is serious, because domestic violence victims who've fled an abusive relationship often have to stay in contact with their abuser by phone, particularly in situations where the former couple share custody of their children," Southworth says.

HTH.

Re:I don't get it ?? (0, Troll)

Hyppy (74366) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900901)

So use a prepaid cell phone. The only thing the "abuser" will be able to get is a cell number, which can be turned off at will.

Re:I don't get it ?? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26900967)

yeah because battered women have just so much money to throw around on cell phones...most of them are so screwed financially that they spend a period of time in a shelter.

but the way that you put quotes around abuser shows where you really stand on this.

Re:I don't get it ?? (2, Insightful)

assassinator42 (844848) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901031)

How would those people afford to have a permanent phone number to call from, then? You can get a prepaid phone for around $20 per three months.

Re:I don't get it ?? (4, Informative)

FingerSoup (928761) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901079)

So you want people to be able to call the shelter, whom also blocks their number? Show up with a nice "XXX Women's Shelter" On call display so that the women can be hunted down? Real smart.... Not everyone has access to cheap disposable cell phone plans.

Re:I don't get it ?? (3, Interesting)

Thiez (1281866) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901441)

Surely it must be possible to create a system that acts as a proxy for phonecalls? Other organizations could then subscribe and register their phone numbers with the proxy. Phone the proxy, then enter the phone number you want to call, and the proxy calls that number for you and starts acting as a (dun-dun-DUN) proxy. All the callee can see is where the proxy is located.

Does this kinda thing exist already?

Re:I don't get it ?? (-1, Troll)

Zerth (26112) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901545)

You mean there is someplace that has a battered women's shelter, but doesn't have a Walmart?

Aren't those buildings symbiotes?

Re:I don't get it ?? (-1, Troll)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901601)

So you want people to be able to call the shelter, whom also blocks their number? Show up with a nice "XXX Women's Shelter" On call display so that the women can be hunted down?

How else are we supposed to cut their heads off with our swords?

Re:I don't get it ?? (5, Interesting)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901179)

Actually, battered women's shelters and advocacy groups can help with this problem. They often actually buy victims throw-away cell phones for this purpose.

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901473)

Yeah, I was going to say. I thought that was the entire reason I donate my cell phones to the YWCA when I'm done with them.

Re:I don't get it ?? (5, Interesting)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901523)

Although I agree with your sentiment about the OP's attitude, it is an unfortunate fact that protection orders are routinely used by the woman's lawyer in a divorce case. My brother in law is going through a really nasty divorce right now, which his wife initiated when his salary got drastically cut. The first thing she did was file for a protective order against him, on the grounds that she was "afraid" of him. It was granted immediately, since that is policy in most courts, and now he can't enter his own house. Meanwhile, she gets to strip the house of anything of value (like checkbooks, etc.) and he can do nothing about it. And as far as I know, the only "violence" he ever employed was on his high school football team.

Women like this play right into the "they're all lying" crowd, and reinforce the misogynistic views that some abusers have.

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900917)

There are so many things wrong with that sentence that I don't have any idea where to start. In cases where it's that bad, one has to wonder why there's shared custody involved. And it really makes me wonder why they need to use the phone, some other form of communication, one with logs, would probably be a better choice anyways.

Then again, I can't imagine who in their right mind would call from their landline assuming that it couldn't be logged or have the number otherwise identified. My phone number is blocked from caller ID and most companies I call for service know what it is without asking.

Re:I don't get it ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901567)

Shared custody because the COURTS force it. Alienation of whatever -- parental alienation? I know CHILDREN who have been sexually abused by their fathers and still are forced by the courts to have overnight, unsupervised visits with their abusers. It makes me sick to watch that little girl just die inside.

And her mother.

And her mother taking abuse from the system for 'false reports'.

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901049)

Except they really don't. The system in their state that deals with custody and such will do that on behalf of the woman (though usually not the man.) They don't have to be in touch with them at all. Going into the subject of domestic violence would only complicate the issue, but suffice to say that a lot of the time it's pure bullshit. (Actual rape is underreported.)

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

FredFredrickson (1177871) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901449)

If the man is abusive, he usually loses custody.. So, yeah, stay off the phone ladies. If you're really itching to call somebody, call me. ;)

Re:I don't get it ?? (4, Insightful)

Thornburg (264444) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901135)

The company offering this unblocking service should offer a free service to victims of abuse where they can call the company (by way of an 800 or 888 number), and the company will place a monitored and recorded call to the person in question (i.e. connect the two, but record the conversation and have an operator either always listening, or available at the push of a button).

This would allow them to make a call that doesn't reveal their location, and would make a heck of a lot more sense than having private phone calls with someone who has the potential to cause you extreme harm.

Re:I don't get it ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901245)

My ex used to call me, blocking her CallerID. I got an 800 number, and the first time she called, voila, I had HER number.

Really, this BS about "domestic violence victims" is just that ... BS. Anyone can get your number by forwarding to an 800 number. Live with it.

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

Markspark (969445) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900891)

now they can't call and whine without the person on the receiving end knowing who to blame.

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

wjh31 (1372867) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900897)

im guessing they are worried about victims being traced by their numbers if they call up the abusive partners, but then why are they even calling them... so your point still stands in my view. If you have to hide your number you are likely up to no good, why not just make it illegal to hide your caller id

Re:I don't get it ?? (5, Insightful)

Hyppy (74366) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900927)

The "if you've got nothing to hide..." argument is quite the slippery slope. It's a bit authoritarian to criminalize everything you don't personally do or agree with yourself, isn't it?

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

inviolet (797804) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901487)

The "if you've got nothing to hide..." argument is quite the slippery slope. It's a bit authoritarian to criminalize everything you don't personally do or agree with yourself, isn't it?

Worse than that. That argument implies that the public's moral code is always right, and hence all privacy is suspect.

In reality I find the opposite is usually true. The public gets is moral code from television anyway. Meanwhile virtuous people must remain stealthy lest they be drained for their productivity and punished for their certainty.

Re:I don't get it ?? (3, Insightful)

Spatial (1235392) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901521)

Besides that, it's also a complete fallacy. [butterfliesandwheels.com]

Re:I don't get it ?? (3, Insightful)

Twisted Willie (1035374) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900931)

If you have to hide your number you are likely up to no good, why not just make it illegal to hide your caller id

If you don't let the police into your house, you are likeley up to no good. Why not just get rid of search warrants and make it illegal to deny the police entry to your house?

Re:I don't get it ?? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901311)

Are you being serious??? I can't tell. If you are, your the biggest moron i've ever had the displeasure of reading a comment from!!!!

Re:I don't get it ?? (1)

GuldKalle (1065310) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900941)

Why not just make it impossible to hide your ID?

Re:I don't get it ?? (5, Informative)

athos-mn (64850) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901045)

We're concerned because most crisis call lines are not the phone bank you see on TV, but volunteers that work at home. As a crisis line volunteer, you want your home number blocked so that the client calls the crisis line and not you.

Some of the people we deal with aren't particularly stable and may try to latch on to the crisis worker - these, if they go into common use, could cause mental health issues for the users of crisis hotlines, AND the volunteers.

Re:I don't get it ?? (4, Insightful)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901153)

So go spend $700 on a phone system for the crisis line. You call in, enter your code, and then dial out from the crisis number. My TalkSwitch can do that for my small business without breaking a sweat. The CallerID that goes out is the number from the business. In my case, that sucks, because if you call my office an bounce to my cell, the incoming number is my office number, not the original caller. In this case, it's just a simple matter of training for the volunteers.

You've got it backwards (3, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901423)

The service doesn't reveal your number if they're calling YOU, only if you're calling THEM. According to the article, the reason that domestic abuse people are concerned is because there are situations where an abused spouse might need to call her abuser (such as calls about their kids) but doesn't want to abuser knowing the number where they're calling from.

Personally, I think this is a pretty flimsy excuse. Abuse victims shouldn't be in contact with their abusers, period. If they need to deal with custody issues, they should be doing it through a third party or from a disposable cell phone or pay phone. And if an abuse victim is stupid enough to be contacting their abuser using their new home phone, then there is nothing you can do to protect them anyway (you can't stop someone from being a dumbass).

Re:I don't get it ?? (2, Interesting)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901575)

I would guess that victims of domestic violence would NOT be calling their abusers but would potentially be receiving threatening/harassing calls from their abusers.

Why wouldn't they be rejoicing about this?

both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (1)

egburr (141740) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900885)

They sell one product to expose the caller and one to block the caller? How hypocritical. I wonder which one takes precedence when the caller pays to block and the person called pays to unblock.

Personally, I don't think it should be possible to block caller ID. If you want to be anonymous, find a different phone to use. Pick up a temporary pre-paid cell phone. Get a new one every month. For things where there is a truly legitimate need for anonymity, like domestic abuse, have an option for blocking that requires a court order to enable.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900945)

Because that's over kill. There is no justification for requiring that the number be shown. The fact of the matter is that the number can be spoofed and some of us don't want our number to show up for one reason or another.

I shouldn't have to reveal my number just because the other party wants it, if they really want it they should have to ask. That way I get a say in whether or not my number ends up on a list.

Sort of like how you have to pay a fee to get out of the telephone book, why it is that the phone companies can put it in without permission is beyond me.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901019)

maybe you shouldn't call someone if you don't want them to know your number, tard.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (4, Funny)

rodney dill (631059) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901151)

Hmmm... it suddenly occurs to me that blocking caller id is a lot like the 'Anonymous Coward' option at Slashdot.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (3, Insightful)

rodney dill (631059) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901057)

I shouldn't have to reveal my number just because the other party wants it

...and I shouldn't have to receive/answer anonymous calls just because the calling party wants it that way. As it is I let 'blocked', 'private', or 'unknown' calls bounce to voicemail. If its important enough they can leave a message, and I'll know who is call before I choose to talk to them.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (1)

horza (87255) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901383)

Both hedwards and rodney dill have good points, but both points have flaws.

Being able to block the number is useful if you value privacy, as there is nothing to stop a service harvesting incoming phone numbers as some harvest email addresses. I already get a fair amount of spam via both sms and automated diallers.

A lot of this spam isn't anonymous and bouncing to voicemail wouldn't help. The additional problem with rodney's solution is that if you have friends abroad then often the caller id gets lost internationally. Also some company exchanges strip the caller id from internal lines.

Here's an idea for a Symbian app: if the call is anonymous then bounce to a menu system, where the options are to go to voicemail or to key in their telephone number and be put through.

Phillip.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (1)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901587)

I'd prefer just dropping their call, preferably with a snotty message of some sort.

"Unblock your number and I'll think about picking up the phone, jackass."

Don't even let it ring in that case. Don't even tell me the call came in. Think of it as rejecting emails without an email address in the "from" line.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (3, Interesting)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901099)

I shouldn't have to reveal my number just because the other party wants it, if they really want it they should have to ask. That way I get a say in whether or not my number ends up on a list.

The most sensible thing to do is to get no-caller-ID-blocking. That way, people who block caller ID get a message that they have to enable it to call you. I think people who block caller ID are cocks, and moreover they're stupid cocks because loopholes like this ALWAYS existed.

As others have said, if you want to communicate anonymously, there are means for you to do that. The telephone system was built with public dollars and there is little benefit to even permitting anonymous calls, especially since they are not really and never have really been anonymous. Before caller ID even existed, they were logging all your calls for billing purposes. That information has always been available to "the powers that be". The only thing you get out of an anonymous phone call is being anonymous to technical incompetents, which you can achieve by using a payphone or a prepay cellular phone when you're not talking about people who can subpoena (or just examine) your telephone records.

I do not have non-caller-ID-calls blocked... yet. But I certainly don't ever answer a call on my cellphone that comes in as "Private". That means I never answer my mom's phone calls, an acceptable loss. :P

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (2, Interesting)

egburr (141740) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901189)

There are very few justifications for hiding the number. If you want to talk with me, you *sould* have to reveal your number.

At the moment (not being an abuser) I can not think of ANY reason for you to call me without identifying yourself where I would have any interest in talking with you.

My cell phone is already programmed with a "silence" ring tone for the number "UNKNOWN", so I never even know if you call. Any number not in my phonebook gets a default ringtone that I seldom answer. So, you can leave a messsage, and if it catches my interest and you provide useful identification, then maybe I'll call back.

I've always disagreed with having to pay to NOT be listed in the phone book. That's a completely different issue, though. Just the fact that I have a phone does not mean that everyone should be able to look up my number and address.

However, if you call someone, they *should* get your real phone number (but not your address). If you don't want them to have your number, then don't call them. Or, get a pre-paid disposable cell phone.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (3, Insightful)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901295)

Because that's over kill. There is no justification for requiring that the number be shown. The fact of the matter is that the number can be spoofed and some of us don't want our number to show up for one reason or another.

I shouldn't have to reveal my number just because the other party wants it, if they really want it they should have to ask. That way I get a say in whether or not my number ends up on a list.

Sort of like how you have to pay a fee to get out of the telephone book, why it is that the phone companies can put it in without permission is beyond me.

If you are going to call my house, you are making something happen inside my home, probably without my permission. If you are going to do that, I have a RIGHT to know who you are and where you are calling from.

Don't want me to know who you are? Fine, don't call me.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (1)

slugstone (307678) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901495)

So you let anybody into your house without knowing who they are?

I like to know who I am talking to before I answer the phone.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901563)

Bullshit, and further, fuck you.

You're the one calling me. Frankly, give me your number while the phone is ringing, or don't fucking call at all. Period. I don't want anything to fucking do with you.

You don't have a right to bother me in my own home without even telling me who the fuck you are, and even the telephone ringing constitutes you bothering me.

So either have the balls to state who you are as you're annoying me and attempting to gain my attention in pursuit of a conversation, or don't call at all. It's either one or the other.

Fuck I hate you anonymous pricks. I have better shit to do than deal with a telephone ringing without knowing who it is solely because you don't have the balls to say. Frankly, I want nothing to do with you, and I wouldn't shed a tear if you and your entire family died in a horrifying, flaming car crash.

(Posted anonymously, because, unlike telephones, this isn't even demanding your attention in real time.)

You got it wrong... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901109)

They sell one product to FALSIFY the callerID (spoofcard) not to block it. The other product reveals callerID that was blocked.

So if someone is using spoofcatd, this new service will not affect them at all... the spoofed callerID will be displayed. Big deal.

Re:You got it wrong... (1)

AndrewNeo (979708) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901549)

Well, except one's illegal and the other is presumably not.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (2, Funny)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901299)

Who wins? The guy with the Trace Buster Buster Buster.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901529)

Excellent... I saw this post and wanted to make a Big Hit reference, but I've been beaten. Now I must Taste the Golden Spray.

Re:both blocking and unblocking - which wins? (1)

spooje (582773) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901581)

You just need your trace buster, buster, buster and everything will be fine.

Anonymous retribution? (3, Insightful)

mpoulton (689851) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900895)

Advocacy groups for victims of domestic violence are concerned.

Why? Because this doesn't allow victims to harass their abusive partners anonymously? I fail to see what legitimate use caller ID blocking has in a domestic dispute. If anything, this should be a benefit since it destroys the anonymity of a harassing caller.

Re:Anonymous retribution? (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901083)

Because it's easy to get a new phone number that the abusive ex doesn't know. However, if there are children involved they likely have to call the ex in order to arrange visitation - often a judge will have ordered this phone contact so not doing so will have consequences. And yes there have been cases of caller ID being used to find and hurt/kill ex-partners.

Of course in these days of cheap pay-as-you-go cell phone services. it doesn't seem too hard to get such a phone (or even just a pay-as-you-go simcard from the same provider your phone is locked to) to use for only those calls.

Re:Anonymous retribution? (2, Insightful)

Stewie241 (1035724) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901595)

If the one partner is truly abusive, then why are we letting them visit children?

Re:Anonymous retribution? (1, Insightful)

hal9000(jr) (316943) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901093)

Why? Because this doesn't allow victims to harass their abusive partners anonymously?

spoken like a true 'tard. Is that the only reason you can see for wanting to hide your number? so that you can harass someone?

never been abused or threatened, have you? Maybe a case is made because someone wants to call a person who is abusive and you don't want them to call you back? Say, you have an abusive spouse but you have to share custody. You need to call them but don't want them calling you and abusing you? Hrm, maybe that's a good idea.

Abusive people will go along way to make others lives miserable.

Re:Anonymous retribution? (2, Informative)

mpoulton (689851) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901173)

spoken like a true 'tard. [snip] Say, you have an abusive spouse but you have to share custody. You need to call them but don't want them calling you and abusing you? Hrm, maybe that's a good idea.

If the court is involved to order shared custody, then the court can just as easily issue an injunction prohibiting the abuser from calling the victim. Violation of the order begets jail and fines.

Even in the absence of a court order, the victim could block incoming calls from the abuser's number - assuming this technology is available to defeat ID blocking! All things considered, the ability to block one's originating number seems much more useful for the abuser than the victim.

Re:Anonymous retribution? (1)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901433)

And if you believe that they don't flaunt the order and rarely get hammered with it, I've got some nice-n-dry beachfront property on the middle of the Florida coastline to sell you... ;-)

Re:Anonymous retribution? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901443)

If the court is involved to order shared custody, then the court can just as easily issue an injunction prohibiting the abuser from calling the victim. Violation of the order begets jail and fines.

Because injunctions and restraining orders work so well don't'cha know. Just ask all the dead women who had them.

Re:Anonymous retribution? (1)

Manfre (631065) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901547)

Blocking a number doesn't work since that person could easily use another phone, or use spoofcard.

I find it interesting that you are strongly defending abusers.

Re:Anonymous retribution? (1, Redundant)

hummassa (157160) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901201)

I said it and I will say it again: if the other person is abusive, you should not be communicating with them via telephone, only via lawyers and police officers.

Re:Anonymous retribution? (3, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901573)

There is *no* reason for an abuse victim to be contacting their abuser from their real phone other than sheer stupidity--none, zero, zilch. Any custody or kids issues should be done through third-parties, period. And even in the rare emergency where they just HAD to personally get in touch with Prince Charming, they could use a pre-paid cell phone, pay phone, some random business's phone, a third party's phone, etc. If Julie Dumbass just can't bear to let Jimmy Wife-Beater go, then there is nothing you can do to stop her. And why should the rest of us have to suffer just because she's that stupid?

Re:Anonymous retribution? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901367)

Anonymous cowards are positively livid.

"We are being forced instead into the internet," wrote one in an email, "And that medium is simply not sustainable for our anti-semitic rants. We have drafted proposals based on a karma system we found on a pony discussion forum, but we have been unable to phone the telcos with our plans."

Blocking Caller ID illegal in some states (5, Interesting)

kurt555gs (309278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900911)

The State of Michigan and I believe 6 other states passed laws written by the RIAA to make it a felony to mask your IP address. The laws were written so broadly though, that masking the information about any electronic identity would constitute a crime including caller ID.

Many states modified this before passage, but Michigan and several other states just passed the RIAA bill as submitted.

It is a class 3 felony to block caller ID in Michigan.

Thanks RIAA

Re:Blocking Caller ID illegal in some states (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901111)

While it wouldn't particularly surprise me, do you have a link to something backing this up?

Re:Blocking Caller ID illegal in some states (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901129)

It is a class 3 felony to block caller ID in Michigan.

It's not likely to be upheld in this way, and is definitely not likely to stay this way if it does. The RIAA may be powerful politically in some ways, but the telemarketers and bill collectors have their own allies in the legislature as well.

Re:Blocking Caller ID illegal in some states (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901297)

It's also a felony to sit OUTSIDE a coffee shop and check your email. A man in sparta michigan was arrested and found guilty of this crime 3 years ago.

If you are in the state of michigan, NEVER EVER tell a cop what you are doing on your laptop, simply hold down the power button to crash power it off and close it and say, Writing a private love letter. you never EVER say you were online, or doing anything.

This is not a good state to live or work in.

Sounds like a good idea to me... (1)

rodney dill (631059) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900929)

... I always felt that blocked calls were the equivalent of someone showing up at your front door with a paper bag (with eye-holes) over their head, and they won't reveal who they were until you answer the door.

Of course it just may end up generating more business for the SpoofCard....

Re:Sounds like a good idea to me... (3, Insightful)

Sebilrazen (870600) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901055)

... I always felt that blocked calls were the equivalent of someone showing up at your front door with a paper bag (with eye-holes) over their head...

Sounds like my past couple of dates.

Re:Sounds like a good idea to me... (1)

rodney dill (631059) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901115)

Ouch!

TrapCall (2, Funny)

arndawg (1468629) | more than 5 years ago | (#26900953)

Sounds like something a certain bear at a certain /b/ would set up.

Re:TrapCall (0, Offtopic)

Tryle (1159503) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901017)

IT'S A TRAP!

Re:TrapCall (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901249)

IT'S A TRAP!

Ackbar? Is that you?

I've been doing this for years (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26900981)

This is old. I've been doing this for years.

I pay $10 a month with tollfreemax and get an 800 number, and forward all my calls to it, then it rings back to my second line. I get callerID on every call.

Re:I've been doing this for years (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901091)

Good for you. On the other hand, why is this even possible? The caller isn't calling the 800 number, so it's entirely the forwarder's decision to use the 800 service. Shouldn't the forwarder's number be the only one revealed to the 800 service?

I assume that there is a configuration which tells the last switch not to suppress caller ID if the call is paid for by the recipient. Wouldn't it be easy to amend the condition with "and the call is not forwarded"? Telcos could still grab caller ID before the last hop, but I think it would be illegal to give this information to an outside party.

Call info should follow the money trail... (1)

volxdragon (1297215) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901203)

This is actually an incredibly good point....lets take this a few steps further and say I set up my home phone to call-forward to a 900 # or a number in Zimbabwe. Is the caller who called my (local) number liable for the charges incurred from the call now being forwarded to a possibly extremely expensive toll call destination??!? If so, I've got a new April Fools practical joke all lined up now :) This just seems wrong, the forwarding party, not the caller, should be liable for the billing (and therefore should be the one showing up on the AIN to the 800 #), not the original caller.

Re:Call info should follow the money trail... (1)

AndrewNeo (979708) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901585)

I don't think the forwarding works that way. I think it forwards the call on your dime (which is free, if you're calling a toll-free number, obviously) but it still passes on the Caller ID of the original caller. Otherwise, if you had, say, call forwarding set up to forward from your house to your cellphone, all you'd ever see was your house calling you.

Re:I've been doing this for years (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901145)

I didn't know about this loophole. I'm guessing the telcos aren't necessarily going out of their way to tell you about it, either.

203 Sense and Antisense U.S. Air Date: October 3, (1, Informative)

sesshomaru (173381) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901011)

[The phone clicks. Frank puts the phone down. The gadget bleeps. Roedecker holds it
out for Frank to see. The readout notes, "Anonymous Caller."]

ROEDECKER: Well, obviously whoever called has blocked caller ID. The phone
company does it for a price.

[Frank snatches back the check out of Roedecker's hands.]

ROEDECKER: Whoa, whoa! All you need now is a device to undo their caller block.

[Roedecker hastily grabs a package from a nearby chair and takes off the lid. It's
another gadget, the LMU-83.]

ROEDECKER: The LMU 83 will override their override very nicely. It's a little more
James Bondian but we are living in a more Blofeldian world.

What about callerID spoofing? (2, Interesting)

WibbleOnMars (1129233) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901131)

It's one thing to block your callerID from being presented to the end user - in that case, the intermediary telcos will still be able to see the callerID; they pass it between themselves, but just don't pass it to the final end user. That's how this system works -- because they're a telco, they get to see the callerID, but unlike other telcos, they've decided to pass the information on regardless.

But what about spoofed callerIDs? They're the ones that I feel would be genuinely useful to unmask. But sadly, this system won't work in these cases. If the callerID is tampered with at source, that tampered value is what gets passed between the telcos, so there's nothing useful that can be unmasked.

Re:What about callerID spoofing? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901351)

Not too long ago the CallerID string was passed to your phone but with a flag that told your device to not display it. I loved it because the NEC phone system I had at the time would ignore that flag. flipped out a lot of people... but then we had a T1 coming in so the same phone system set the CallerID string for outgoing lines. Line 21 was set for 1-555-555-5555 and the name VATICAN it was awesome for prank calling people.

What is the ratio of bad calls to good? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901169)

1000 to 1? 10,000 to 1? Even higher, with most people going through their entire lives never needing to block their number, but often having people they don't know or don't want to talk to blocking theirs?

If a victim of domestic violence wants to contact their abuser for some reason, but doesn't want the latter to know their number, I'm certain there will be several groups willing to pass on a message -- family, friends, domestic violence shelter, church groups, what have you. There is no need to hide the vast majority of morons, salesmen, and other jerks from blocking their number when they are calling me.

I would go so far as to say that people should have the right to say that they will not accept calls where the originating number is hidden -- just have a recorded message in the phone company switch that says "We're sorry, but the party you are contacting does not accept blocked caller-ID calls. Please remove the block and try again."

Fix telco *657 (2, Informative)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901175)

My telco advertises *657 service (I may have those numbers slightly wrong) to report harassing phone calls, despite caller ID. Simply dial the code and it replies telling you that the call has been logged. If a police report is also filed, these records are given directly to the police, or if a certain number of these automated complaints are made, a report is automatically filed.

The same thing can be achieved by calling the operator immediately after the phone call and reporting it as harassing. The phone company knows who called you, they don't like people abusing the service any more than landlords appreciate the loud annoying neighbour that makes people move out of their buildings.

Re:Fix telco *657 (1)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901339)

Please tell me you have AT&T?

ANI != Caller ID (5, Informative)

knorthern knight (513660) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901219)

I can't believe the ignorance of the referenced article. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automatic_number_identification [wikipedia.org] for an intelligent explanation of what's happening. The important part is...

>>>
Because ANI is unrelated to caller ID, the caller's telephone number and line type
are captured by ANI equipment even if caller ID blocking is activated. The destination
telephone company switching office can relay the originating telephone number to ANI
delivery services subscribers. Toll-free Inward WATS number subscribers and large
companies normally have access to ANI information, either instantly via installed
equipment, or from a monthly billing statement. Residential subscribers can obtain
access to ANI information through third party companies that charge for the service.
>>>

To summarize...

* There are 2 *TOTALLY UNRELATED* means of getting *THE NUMBER THAT IS CALLING YOU*

* Caller ID (technically CNID) sends the callers number during the ringing signal.
    Any outfit with their own PBX can send out whatever crap they want as CNID.
    That's how spoofing services work, and how telemarketers can fake CNID

* ANI (Automatic Number Identification) is billing information data. Spoofing that
    effectively constitutes fraud. And you can be certain that phone companies will
    do whatever is necessary to make sure their billing systems work . ANI is very
    difficult to spoof.

    Having said that, TrapCall can be beaten. Not spoofed, but beaten. ANI passes the number making the call. If you call via Skype, your call is forwarded to Skype, who then forwards the call to the destination. The destination gets Skype's billing data. This is technically correct, but useless for identifying the originator. Oh yeah, Skype pays connection charges at the receiving end, so don't expect them to freely work for 1-900 numbers. This is roughly equivalant to calling from New York to Los Angeles to ask your brother to pass on a message to someone in Atlanta. The person in Atlanta knows they got called by somebody from Los Angeles. This is technically correct, but doesn't let them know that the message originated from New York.

Web Address (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901259)

The service's site is http://www.trapcall.com./ [www.trapcall.com] Seems to be missing from the article.

Back in the old days of British Telecom (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26901279)

There was no such thing as caller ID. All calls were anonymous. When it was proposed there was outcry from the privacy groups and tin-hat brigade. I know many people who have their caller ID blocked by default. Why shouldn't they? Also in the UK all toll-free numbers NEVER get your caller ID, even if you don't block it. Seems you yanks have everything upside down to me...

One Thing About This Bothers Me (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901313)

Why does a listener try to communicate to someone that initially does not identify themselves, then if the listening caller does not know them, the caller does not identify that they are the agent for someone else. Lastly, why does the caller feel compelled to not identify their intentions.

Grand Central is another solution (2, Informative)

Brit_in_the_USA (936704) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901317)

I happily use Google's Grand Central(in eternal beta, so getting a telephone number may require a wait) it allows me to block all calls with no ID , forward them to a specific spam voice mail box or to my general voice mail (without even ringing my phones). You can even record a custom greeting >;-}

It also carries a known spam caller telephone list that you can subscribe to - they will automatically get dropped or straight to spam voice mail box.

Since changing my cell phone number I have given out my grand central number to everyone but family. It certainly reduces the number of people I need to tell if I switch cell phone provider (and number) in the future too - I'm not going thought the hassle of number porting.

TelTech is in the protection racket. (1)

Name Anonymous (850635) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901337)

From the linked article:
He also expects his new business will be good for his old one.
"The only way to block your number after this is released is to use Spoofcard," he says with a laugh.


Basically the TrapCall service is extortion to get people to buy their SpoofCard service.

Re:TelTech is in the protection racket. (1)

knorthern knight (513660) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901447)

> "The only way to block your number after this is released is
> to use Spoofcard," he says with a laugh.

False, bordering on an outright lie. Any 3rd-party forwarder will work. The destination will see the forwarder's number, not yours. Heck, Skype or a cheap dedicated cellphone homed in another area-code will work just as well.

Two interim solutions (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 5 years ago | (#26901405)

Short-term things to try:

1) Third-party-routed calling that make all calls come "from" the 3rd party. The tech is cheap enough to make this commercially viable for people who aren't victims, and charities, governments, and in-kind donations from service providers can cover the cost for victims.

2) Telco forging of originator telephone numbers: If you use *69, send a generic phone number instead of the real phone number. I'm not a telephone techie, this may break things, so viability would have to be checked before it's done.

Long-term:

Change the call-forwarding mechanism so if calls are forwarded, the only calling-station information available to the final or intermediate destinations are those available to the original destination. This might require technical and/or legal changes. I've got a hunch that with today's phone system, the en-route and final-destination telephone switches will have to "know all," but there is no reason the end customer at the final destination should know more than the original destination, even for 800 calls. If billing is an issue, then charge the end user as if the call made from the forwarding phone, not the originating phone. The original caller is already paying as if the call was not forwarded.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?