An unknown number is a number you do not recognize, while a private number is a number with an anonymous caller ID. While there are methods you can try, it is not always possible to recall a private number. Whenever possible, it is not always advisable. Be careful when answering calls from unknown numbers. Only receive if you have good reasons to believe that the number that called you belongs to someone you “may” know.
How to know when to call a private number
Be wary if you hear the phone ring once. A missed call with a single ring could be a “malefactor”: someone who is trying to get you called back just to steal your money. If you have heard only one ring, do not recall the number. If it wasn’t a crammer, it was probably the wrong number. Telemarketers make the phone ring at least four times, or for at least 15 seconds, before hanging up.
Check the prefix. If the number is displayed, look for it online. Criminals call from countries with the same international code (+1) as the United States, so they look like national calls. However, if you look for numbers, you can identify them as foreigners by their prefix.
- A good rule of thumb is that if you don’t recognize the prefix, don’t answer.
- Many of these calls come from the Dominican Republic (809), Jamaica (876), the British Virgin Islands (284) and Grenada (473).
- Never answer numbers that start with 900, those numbers are paid.
- There are also online services that allow you to search for numbers. Search for “reverse lookup” or “find out who called you”.
Check a message. Someone who tries to call you for a serious matter will leave a phone message or contact you by other means. If you get a call from a number you don’t know or an anonymous number, it’s probably not important. Don’t call back!
- If they leave a message or the number called is an 800 number (free), go ahead and call them back.
- The crammers will never leave a message because they are operating with an extremely limited profit margin and cannot afford an international call.
Pay attention to charges on your phone bill. If you notice mysterious charges, in particular for something undefined, such as “special services” or “premium service”, on your phone bill, call your telephone operator and let them know that there are unauthorized charges. I generally repay you.
- If you have recalled an unknown number and found yourself listening to a recorded message, pay close attention to your phone bill. If you have called and found yourself listening to a recording of “adult services”, expect unauthorized charges.
- Don’t be embarrassed to ask your telephone company to refund you. Scam calls are a daily problem for them.
Call the numbers you know. Sometimes scammers leave a message with a number to call. If you receive a voice message or a text message from someone who claims to be your bank, your cell phone provider or a hospital, try calling with your hidden number.
Call a private number for free with * 69 or # 69
The service is free and to activate it, just dial * 69 from a landline before another call arrives. On mobile phones, use # 69. After dialing the number, if a person answers, ask who’s talking.
The disadvantages of this approach depend on the telephone service provider. For example, some providers provide a computer-generated entry indicating the number along with the option to make a call. Other telephone providers call the private number and do not provide the number.
In addition, * 69 and # 69 do not work with all phones and some operators limit the time to activate the service 30 minutes after receiving the call.
How to recall a private number with reverse search
If you can find the number, use the reverse phone number search. Enter the number on Google or in the Yellow Pages to find out if the number belongs to a mobile or landline phone and to find the location where the phone is registered. In some cases, you must pay to receive detailed information.
Check your telephone carrier’s call records
The telephone service provider keeps a record of incoming and outgoing calls. To access this list, log in to your account and enter your account password.
Sometimes private caller numbers are listed here, without masks. To find the number, check the phone log on your phone to find the time the anonymous call arrived. Then, look online at the call log, sometimes located in the invoice and usage menu, to match the date and time.
The duration of call recording varies depending on the telephone operator. Typically, these records are stored for one to seven years and can be used in criminal investigations.
Use an online service to recall a private number
How to call a private number – Whooming
The first service I suggest you try to call private number is Whooming. If you had never heard of it, you should know that it is a free online service that can also be used as a smartphone app through which you can identify private numbers using the call forwarding technique. In a nutshell, at the time of receiving a call with the anonymous, the call will simply be hung up and will be automatically diverted to the Whooming number, which in turn will identify the caller.
How to call a private number – WoozThat
Another service you can rely on tocall a private number is WoozThat. This is a similar solution to the aforementioned Whooming that allows you to find out who has a certain anonymous number and therefore offers the possibility of being able to call back using the call forwarding technique. The service is completely free and allows you to track the number of calls instantly. The only “novelty” is that it only works with mobile telephony and can only be used via the appropriate app for Android and iOS.
How to recall an anonymous number
TrueCaller (Web/Android/iOS/Windows Mobile) – This is a famous service that can also be used as a smartphone app that can count on a database of over 3 million numbers. It allows you to search for a phone number and easily find its owner. On mobile devices, it also reports to whom the reference number belongs during the call.
Sync.Me (Web/Android/iOS) – Another popular service that allows you to identify both fixed and mobile numbers with the advantage that the search is also performed among the information on social networks.
Who’s calling? (Android) – An online service with a rich database that allows you to find out who owns a specific phone number and that will prove useful for tracking calls with a private number. If used as an app, it also shows the caller ID and allows you to automatically block annoying phone calls.