Recently, really rotten robocallers have been running rampant. Even though our telephone number is on the "Do not call" list, we get at least six calls every day from scammers and robocallers who seem to have the misguided notion that we're on a "Do call" list. Most of the callers never leave a message. Of the messages that are left, some are from legitimate businesses such as insurance companies and solar panel installers but most are scams: "You owe the IRS money"; "We offer cheap viagra from India"; "You have a refund coming from Apple." (We own no Apple products.)

Our phone has caller ID but often does not ID the callers. It will show UNKNOWN NAME and not show the phone number. Sometimes the number shown is only a 1 -- and sometimes even our own number.

When we get scam calls, we report them to,, and other websites that maintain databases of unsafe callers and telemarketers. Many of these scammers call once or twice a day, for many weeks. They're persistent, I'll give them that.

Some phone providers now offer Scam ID and/or Scam Lock. If a call comes from a known scammer, the caller ID will replace the number with SCAM ALERT.

Sirius Buzz is a forum. That means other people besides myself participate in the discussions. If you've been bombarded with scam calls and robocalls -- and who hasn't? -- share your stories here. Don't make me beg.

Sick of robocalls? They're about to get even worse.
Jim Axelrod, CBS News, Sep 20 2018 6:39 PM

If it feels like you are getting more robocalls these days, it's because you are. Last year, some 30 billion spam calls were made in the US. This year, that number is expected to climb by more than 10 billion.

Alex Quilici runs the robocall blocking company and says the most alarming part is the number of spam calls that are actually scams. Of the 4 billion robocalls made in August, nearly 1.8 billion of them were fraudulent. Next year, analysis by First Orion predicts half of all mobile calls will be scams.

Quilici's company makes an app that tells robocallers your number is out of order, tricking them into leaving you alone. But he said technology also enables robocallers to be ever more efficient. "It's so easy to go make an enormous number of robocalls to people," he said. "If I'm a scammer, I can go annoy Seattle for 500 bucks."

If you send out enough lines, someone will bite. "You get a call where it says, 'It's the IRS, you gotta pay us today or we're going to go to your work tomorrow or arrest you in front of your kids,'" Quilici said. "If you think you might owe money, it's a really compelling scam."

The number one way to deal with robocalls is never answer the phone with a number you don't recognize. But that's getting tougher to do, since scammers now use programs that make calls with familiar numbers or even with your own number.