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Nuisance phone calls

How to prevent nuisance phone calls

Nuisance phone calls come in many different forms. They are an invasion of privacy and can be threatening, abusive or obscene and may include heavy breathing or silence.

They may be random calls by pranksters or targeted calls by people known or not known to the victim, who intend to cause upset or intimidation for revenge, anger or humour.

How to deal with nuisance phone calls:

  • don't give out the phone number when answering the phone
  • never give personal information out over the phone to an unknown caller
  • if the call is malicious, try to remain calm as some callers gain pleasure from an emotional response
  • don't engage them in conversation, hang up immediately
  • at the end of the call dial 1471 to see if the caller's number has been recorded - if it has, make a note of it and pass it to the telephone service provider
  • report all nuisance calls to the telephone service provider
  • if the call was abusive or threatening, contact the police
  • if the calls are persistent, the telephone service provider may suggest putting a trace on the line to gather evidence for the police
  • the police will require evidence of the nuisance calls before they can prosecute
  • keep a log of all the nuisance calls - including the time, date and details of what was said
  • service providers can provide a call barring system
  • alternatively, it may be worth changing the phone number