In Cyber Safety

How to Block a Number for Your Own Safety

how to block a number

Those harassing phone callers just keep calling! It could be an ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend that does not know how to accept that the relationship is over. Alternatively, the calls may come from a relentless telemarketer trying to sell you stuff you do not want. Maybe you got behind in paying your credit card bills and the calls come from a collection agency. No matter why these unwanted telephone calls are coming, there are many ways to stop them. It is important to know how to block a number, to maintain your peace of mind.

How to Block Your Number

The first thing to know in order to stop someone from capturing your telephone number is to learn how to block a phone number. The caller-id system is setup to automatically give the telephone number of the person making the call to the person who is receiving the call. This is something to be avoided when learning how to block a number. Something that seems so innocent, like calling a customer service line with a question about something you just bought, puts your telephone number in the database of that company’s customer management system.

In many cases, a single telephone call starts an automatic procedure of these companies calling back for customer surveys or other marketing messages. Consumers are not aware they gave permission for these calls by making a call to the company. Once a telephone number get puts in a database, it is a difficult procedure how to block your phone number.

National Do Not Call Lists


In Canada, a person is able to register telephones in their homes, mobile phones, fax numbers, and VOIP numbers on the Canadian do not call registry. Complaints made against any telemarketing company that does not follow the rules and the penalties include citations and fines for violating the Canadian law.

United States

In the United States, there is a national do not call registry system where a person can register a phone number and put the telephone number on a list of telephone numbers that cannot be called legally with marketing messages. Does this system of how to block your number work? Somewhat, but it does not work for how do I block a number 100% perfectly.

The U.S. Federal Communication Commission (FCC) states that this “Do Not Call Registry” will not prevent all unwanted telephone calls, such as:

  • calls from companies with which you created a commercial relationship
  • calls you agreed to receive by giving written permission
  • calls that are non-commercial in nature and have no marketing messages
  • calls made by or on behalf of non-profit organizations

United Kingdom

The system to register telephone numbers on the do not call list is called the Telephone Preference Service (TPS). The TPS system is for residential telephones. It works for voice messages on mobile phones, but is not effective in blocking any unsolicited marketing messages sent as text messages to mobile phones.

UK Cold-Calling Scam
One extremely irritating thing that occurred for UK persons, was the telemarketers who resided outside of the jurisdiction of the UK legal system, cold-called (telephone calls made without permission) UK residents and offered them a paid service to protect them from unwanted telephone calls. In other words, they were selling a free UK government service to prevent unwanted calls while they were making them.

A separate system for businesses in the UK is the Corporate Telephone Preference Service (CPTS), which was reviewed by the legal firm of Glaisyers. There is significant controversy about this system and even a movement to remove it from law because of restraint of trade concerns that negatively affect small businesses.

International Do Not Call Lists

So far, there is not any organization set up to provide do not call lists that extend outside of any particular country’s boundaries. Each country is dealing with the problem of unwanted telephone calls by themselves.

How Do I Block My Number Using My Telephone

Both landline telephone numbers and mobile telephone numbers have a feature to turn off the caller-id function and this is a useful way for how do you block your number. The systems differ between the countries and whether or not the telephone is a landline or a mobile phone. This Wikihow gives information for how to block your number for telephones used in different countries.

To Block Your Number for a Specific Call

In order to block the caller-id function when making a specific telephone call, all that is needed to do is to use a few numbers or entries in front of the telephone number being called. Here are the numbers to us for different countries:

  • Argentina: for landlines dial either *31# or *31* then the number or for mobile phones dial #31# then the number.
  • Australia: for landlines dial 1831 then the number or for mobile phones dial #31# then the number.
  • Denmark, Iceland and Switzerland: dial *31* then the number.
  • Germany: On most landlines and mobiles, dial *31# then the number. Some mobile phones you dial #31# then the number.
  • Hong Kong: dial 133 then the number.
  • Israel: dial *43 then the number.
  • Italy: for landlines dial *67# then the number or for mobile phones dial #31# then the number.
  • New Zealand: dial 0197 then the number (works for Telecom and for Vodafone).
  • South Africa: dial *31* then the number (works for Telkom).
  • Sweden: dial #31# then the number.
  • UK and Ireland, dial 141 then the number.
  • USA and Canada, dial *67 then the number.
  • For a GSM phone in any country, dial #31# then the number.

Using a Call-Through Service

When dialing by using a Voice-Over-IP (VOIP) service the original number used to connect to the service, such as Skype is not displayed to the person being called. All they know is the caller is using the Skype system to contact them. The Skype user name is revealed but not the telephone number.

Some Providers Allow Blocking of Caller-ID for all Calls as Another Way of How to Block a Number

Check with your providers to see if they have a feature that allows the blocking of caller-id for all calls. Many systems have this feature. Some charge for this service. This has a mixed result because many receivers of telephone calls want to know who is calling them before answering the call.

Telemarketers use the blocking of caller-ids to hide who they are. They hope that the curiosity of the person will be strong enough for them to answer the call. This is also one of the reasons a complaint about receiving harassing calls is not so easy to prove. The records of the calls coming in with the caller-id feature blocked do not show who actually made the calls.

When a person you are calling receives a call from a person that has blocked the caller-id feature, then they have no idea who you are. One solution to this dilemma is sophisticated software that allows your caller-id information to be given ONLY to your trusted friends and family, whose numbers you pre-select. Your private caller-id information is given only to those people who you authorize to receive it and your telephone does not give this caller-id information to anyone else. This is the most elegant solution, and it is the best practices standard but has not yet been implemented by all telecommunication systems in the world.

Use a Public Pay Telephone Is One Way of How to Block a Number

If you can find one, and they are getting more and more rare, if you make a call using a public telephone, the caller-id information that is transmitted, if any, is only about a phone that could be used by anyone in the area. Do be aware that you may be captured on video surveillance when using such public phones.

Achieving Telephone Privacy

There are a few rules for achieving the strongest telephone usage privacy. They include:

  • Use only temporary disposable phones.
  • Use these temporary phones to call through a temporary account set up on a VOIP system.
  • Make use of caller-id blocking.
  • Never write down your telephone number or give it to anyone. You call them, they cannot call you.
  • Discard and completely destroy the chip in the temporary phone frequently.

There are many reasons why a person does not want to give their telephone number or have what they say on a telephone call to be tracked. It is your privacy and it is up to you to guard this against anyone who may misuse the information.

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