How do scammers and telemarketers get my phone number?
Every time your phone rings these days, there's a great chance a scammer or telemarketer is calling. But how do these people get your phone number in the first place?
There are many methods scammers and telemarketers use to obtain our phone numbers. As former CIA agent Jason Hanson explains, every time we sign up for an app using our phone number (e.g. for social media) or when we buy a product we don’t have control on who is sharing this information (Agent of Influence, 2019).
Scammers and telemarketers can actually purchase phone numbers from third party data providers. (Lauren Chan, 2021) Here’s a list of how these providers may have gotten your number, according to the Better Business Bureau:
You called an 800, 888, and/or 900 number (they use caller I.D. technology and collect phone numbers).
You applied for credit.
You contribute to charities.
You’re a registered voter.
You bought anything, or entered any contest, and gave your phone number in the process.
Your phone number is on your checks.
You call a business, and they have caller I.D. (which, you should assume they do).
As for Genie, it’s important you know we never share your personal information with these third parties, our sole purpose is to protect you from scammers and telemarketers.