By Katie Ritchie
If you’ve been bombarded by more robocalls than usual in the last 2 months, you aren’t alone. A reader emailed to report he has gotten calls claiming to be from the Social Security Administration.
Please remember, the SSA and other government agencies will not contact you by phone. They will never request personal information to verify your identity. Don’t call a toll free number from a voicemail left by a robocaller. If somehow you end up on the phone with an actual person, please don’t give your personal information to them. Remember, if the SSA needs to reach you, they’ll send you mail. If the Lexington County Sheriff needs to reach you, they’ll contact you in person.
It’s not just scam callers who are picking up, though. Teltech, the company behind the Robokiller spam call blocking app, reported that in September 4.9 billion spam calls were made in the US. Of those, 28 million were from South Carolina, alone. In October the total number of spam calls rose to 5.5 billion. They claim our neighbor, Columbia, saw 33.5 million spam calls in the month of October. That’s right, Columbia by itself saw more spam calls than the state total for September.
No wonder our phones won’t stop ringing.
So who are the culprits?
Aside from the scammer calls, many industries are making the most use of robocalls. Teltech provided statistics on industries in the 803 area code that utilize robocalls. The biggest utilizer of robocalls are debt collectors; they make up 38.08% of robocalls. Telemarketers make up 19.62%, religious organizations make up 14.25%, and health insurance organizations make up 10.76%.