A Beginner’s Guide on How to Spoof a Phone Number and More!

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How to Use A Fake Number To Call Someone (Spoof A Phone Number) 

Good old prank calls are an excellent entertainment source. However, with more and more people sending unknown calls to voicemails and spams automatically, pulling off pranks has become quite a tricky job. And that’s where call spoofing lends a hand. 

Call ID Spoofing is the process of changing your Caller ID to a fake phone number. Sometimes, tricksters spoof their phone number to a number the victim recognizes. This way, they force a victim to pick up the call. It has become a popular technique for scammers and pranksters alike. 

While pranks are harmless, scams might cause financial loss. Therefore, you need to know everything about Call Spoofing to protect yourself if you ever face such a situation. And that’s exactly what we are gonna do in this article. So, read on to know all about caller ID spoofing. 

Common Reasons to Spoof Phone Number

Below are some of the common reasons people like to spoof their phone numbers. 

  • To pull off a classic prank, call on a friend or family member. 
  • To protect their phone information and privacy from being sold to third parties for advertisement or any other purpose
  • To get a second number
  • To use their primary phone number only for friends and family and the secondary number for social media acquaintances or other fellows they don’t feel secure sharing real phone numbers with
  • To call a debt collector so as to avoid getting their calls time and again
  • To scam others by faking a caller ID that the victim recognizes

Why Spoof a Phone Number? 

In today’s digital age, protecting your privacy and personal information is becoming increasingly important. While it’s difficult to change your phone number on all platforms and services, phone number spoofing gives you the ability to add a layer of security to your personal information. You can use this second caller ID on as many services as you like and then easily dispose of it off if the need be. Therefore, we suggest using a secondary phone number for ordering food, clothes, or other similar online services. 

Is Spoofing Your Phone Number Legal? 

Of course, spoofing is very much legal. At its core, there’s nothing illegal about changing your caller ID into a fake number in the United States. Other countries may have other laws. Therefore check on the local laws before deciding anything. We don’t suggest breaking local laws if it is illegal in your territory. 

With that said, Spoofing caller ID is legal in most territories simply because it is your intentions that matter. Like many other acts, your intentions actually determine the legality of your actions. To give you some examples: 

It is unquestionably illegal if you spoof your phone and then use random numbers to call other people and scam them. 

If you hide your number and then call a business to protect your privacy, it is undeniably legal. 

If you use a secondary number that you obtained through spoofing to call specific contacts in your list, it’s totally legal. 

If you hide your actual phone number to prank someone, it is somewhat legal. Remember, pranking others that cause harm, distress, or abuse is illegal and can be taken to court. On the other hand, simply prank calling in which there is an element of fun for the other party as well is fine. For instance, tricking your friend into thinking that the president is congratulating them on their birthday is definitely funny (depending on your sense of humor, of course). But extracting their credit card information by tricking them into thinking they are talking to their credit company is undoubtedly a crime. 

If you use a disposable number to threaten someone, it is totally illegal because of your intentions alone. 

How Do I Actually Spoof a Call with a Fake Number? 

Below are the 3 main methods you can use to spoof a phone number or a voice call

  1. There are several call forwarding websites and apps that give you a permanent US number. These are permanent fake numbers. They don’t need to be recycled. You can use them for as long as you want. They are real phone numbers and behave as such. For example, TextPlus, Textfree, Talkatone, Google Voice, GoHeyWire, etc 
  1. You can use services geared towards “Burner Numbers.” These are disposable fake numbers, free to download as they often come with a 7-day free phone number. Burners are designed to be tossed into the trash after a certain period. Burner, Hushed, CoverMe, Sideline, and Line2 are the most popular temporary burner phone number apps. 
  1. You can also utilize different caller ID spoofing services and apps that hide your actual phone number. Just register at their site, pay the subscription fee and use their services for as long as you need. When you use these services, the recipient sees a false phone number while you use your own phone number to make the call. SpoofTel, Spoof Card, and Spoof Call are some of the examples of these online spoofing services you can use.

FCC on Call Spoofing – Latest Developments and Future

Since July 1, 2021, FCC has implemented the STIR and SHAKEN anti-spoofing Law. STIR is the Secure Telephone Identity Revisited, while SHAKEN is an acronym for Signature-based Handling of Asserted information using toKENs. These are two new systems designed to curb the widespread nature of caller ID spoofing. These two standards ensure that the calls you receive on your phone come from the same source and not from a third party (spoofed calls). 

These laws give phone carriers the authority to block spoofed phone numbers. While these rules affect large companies as of writing this article, smaller companies may also be required to comply in the near future. Jessica Rosenworcel, in a statement, said that “We’re not going to stop until we get robocalls, scammers, and spoofers off the line.” So, the future may not be very promising for fake callers, scammers, and spoofers. 

Key Takeaways 

With that said, we hope now you know how to spoof a phone number or use a fake phone number to pull a prank. Remember, spoofing may be legal but scamming is not. If you intend to spoof a caller ID to scam someone, you can land yourself in trouble. As most people use spoofing for scamming, FCC is coming down hard on spoofing services. While we provided information about spoofing services, be sure to double-check with your local laws to avoid any legal trouble. That’s all for now, thank you for reading!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can spoof calls be detected?

Unfortunately no, there’s no way to tell if you are receiving a spoofed call before you receive the actual call. If someone is calling from a number you are already familiar with, you wouldn’t know unless you pick it up and spot a change in their voice. Calling the same number back will also be fruitless, as it often results in a busy tone rather than going to the actual number of the spoofer.

Can I stop my phone ID from being spoofed?

Unfortunately, that’s not possible either. There’s no real way to protect your phone call ID from being spoofed. Spoofers usually select numbers at random. Therefore, if you ever get targeted, it’s probably because your number got added to their list at random. 

Is it illegal to spoof a call? 

Well, it depends on your intentions. If you are spoofing a number just for fun and don’t cause any financial or mental harm to the other party, then it’s fine. On the other hand, if you are telemarketing, scamming, or causing disturbance/harm to the people, it is illegal and may lead to a knock on your doors by the authorities. 

What happens when you call a spoofed number? 

Nothing, in most cases it returns a busy tone. As the spoofed number is not an actual number, you cannot talk to the spoofer by calling on it. 

How to avoid receiving robot calls

If you regularly receive robot calls, spam calls, or even spoofers trying to trick you, file a complaint with the FCC. You can also register for your phone company’s official robocall blocking services or register for the National DO NOT Call Registry service.