Scam calls have been ringing off the hook in Canada in recent months, and now telecom companies might have a way to fix that.
Just last month, The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (OPC), put out an announcement warning Canadians of fraudulent callers.
They cited the most common kind of fraudulent calls were coming from individuals saying they are from government departments, and sometimes the phone numbers they use appear to be legitimate.
Claims that Social Insurance Numbers have been compromised, and that money is owed seems to be a recurring theme in the calls.
Service Canada and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre have confirmed these calls are fraudulent and that fraudsters are masking their phone number with legitimate government phone numbers in an effort to gain access to personal or financial information.
But now, Canada’s telecom companies say they’re close to implementing new technologies that will help combat the uptick of spam phone calls.
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has given the telecom industry until December 19 to have systems that block or filter out some illegal phone calls.
Nathan Gibson, spokesperson for Bell Canada, told CBC news that network-level call blocking technology is on our network and will be ready for full implementation by the CRTC’s deadline.
“We’ve also applied to the CRTC to conduct a 90-day trial of new call blocking technologies we’re developing to further protect customers from fraudulent and scam calls,” Gibson says told CBC News.
Telus and Rogers are also working developing technologies to combat spam calls.
In the meantime, the OPC is telling Canadians to remember that reputable firms never ask for personal information without significant safeguards.
They say not to give personal information such as a credit card number or Social Insurance Number over the phone, unless it’s to a trusted person or you initiated the call yourself.