Nobody likes robocalls. The Do Not Call List blocks many businesses from calling you on the phone during dinner, but most scammers and spammers simply ignore the list. They continue making billions of illegal robocalls to get you to sign up for whatever con or scam they’re pitching.

Technology is coming to the rescue, however, in the form of a new application that aims to succeed where the FTC’s Do Not Call List falls short. The new program will circumvent the ability for illegal robocalls to even get to your phone in the first place and protect consumers from those unwanted spam calls and telemarketing scams.


Nomorobo: Coming to a Phone Number Near You

Not long ago, the FTC had a contest to see who could come up with the best technological solution to the problems that their Do Not Call List couldn’t fix.  Each month, the fine folks at the FTC get about 200,000 complaints about robocalling, so it’s easy to imagine that they were getting a little bit fed up.

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A 35-year-old software engineer named Aaron Foss was one of two contest winners, with a program called Nomorobo. Out of nearly 800 entries, his was one of the best. How does it work? With the Internet, of course!

Yahoo! Finance has more details:

“The service…relies on a feature of the phone system known as simultaneous ring. When a consumer signs up on the Web with the service, all their calls are routed simultaneously to one of Nomorobo’s online servers. Before the call even rings at the consumer’s end, the service analyzes whether the call should go through or be blocked.”

Anti-Telemarketing System Designed to Learn

How will Nomorobo figure out which numbers are legitimate and which ones aren’t? Here’s where the irony comes in: it will do so by using lists. A ton of lists, in fact. Lists like the FTC’s Do Not Call List will help Nomorobo do what the Do Not Call List was failing to accomplish.

What makes Nomorobo so much more effective than the Do Not Call List, however, is that it can add to its own database automatically.

The program has been designed to “learn,” so it will be able to use the information at hand to decide whether or not a number should be allowed to call you.

If Nomorobo notices a new number that’s making hundreds of calls per hour, you can bet that the program will figure out that something is suspect.

Right now, Nomorobo works best when VoIP (voice over Internet protocol) is being used, so it’s partially limited to services like Veriozon FiOS and Vonage. In the future, though, Foss hopes that Nomorobo can be accessible to anyone.

What Do You Think?

Do you get a lot of annoying phone calls? Would you use Nomorobo or another app to block unwanted calls on your phone? Share your thoughts with us in the comments.


See Also

Stop the Robocall Epidemic and Help the FTC
Winners Announced in FTC Robocall Challenge to Stop Annoying Telemarketer Calls
4 Easy Ways to Block Unwanted Calls on Your Cell Phone

14 Responses

  1. James Seery

    Will it stop calls from Credit Card Service’s? If so I would be Very interested.

  2. Jenny Smith

    I would LOVE to have something that stops all these calls. They truly are an absolute nuisance and when you get the one that says to be removed from our list press 9 and you have pressed it endless times you start to lose your temeper, but there is nobody there to lose it with, just a recorded message. PLEASE hurry and get this working for ordinary people with ordinary telephones. Thank you,

  3. Paula Down

    Yes, I certainly would use it. I get so many unrequested calls that it ruins my day. I even get them on my cell phone which is a number I do not give out to anyone I do not know.

    • Linda

      Yes, just google “how to stop junk mail”… There will be directions on how to do this… Something I have started doing is any junk mail that has postage already paid on the there return envelope, I stuff there envelope with some other companies stuff or just about anything then I send it back. If everyone would do this they would go broke paying for the postage… It gives me a little satisfaction to send them back junk mail… Lets all get on board and do this but only with companies that send a postage paid return envelope… Good Luck Hope this will help…

  4. Sharon Deckard

    I would positively love to use this new system. I currently have a list of over 215 numbers and names of these crazy callers. I started keeping a list about 8 months ago and its now in the 200s. they call at 9 pm and 3 am and all through the day and evening. Its insane. I’ve gotten so that when the number calling me shows up on my tv screen if I don’t know it I don’t answer it. This causes problems because sometimes it from a different department of a company I have been calling but I don’t recognize the number. Its insane and stressful and they should be stopped and sued for harrassment.

  5. Robert Bannister

    Sounds fantastic. What a Christmas present. One “but”: would it work in Australia?

  6. Anita Spencer

    Please stop these intruders from reaching me via the phone. I am listed on the No Call List but that doesn’t work!

  7. Paul

    God bless that man; hope this comes to fruition really, really soon because I sure could use this service. I get between 5-10 calls per day. Long time ago I gave up on the “do not call list” because that certainly works like our government does… NOT!

    • chuck ringwood

      i trackd a call to marysville in ewashington state. i sent a complint to the police dept ther!? unknown if it did anies good. butt it was fun to lit google maps,and google earth fnd these peoples. took about 1/2 hour. give it a shott.

  8. chuck ringwood

    ther r 100s of peoples on 800 ,reverse directory,etc, that complain about alls this robospek!? so; i wil scram des peoples about u r subscription ought to ++ by the 100s.

  9. Gloria Monroe

    I would definitely use it! It needs to be put into use for our home landlines! I was getting swamped with calls from “Rachel At Cardmember’s Services” a credit card scam call, my Mom is getting calls from a scam who reputes to be the FBI with important information, we both just hang up but would love an end to these annoying calls!


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