Phone is one of the most effective and useful way for instant communication. Today, we carry cell phones along with us and stay in touch with our family and friends 24/7. But a phone is also an annoying medium that can be used to threaten, harass, and send obscene messages. You can receive harassing phone calls from a salesperson, teenagers playing pranks, credit collectors, ex-partner, etc.
When someone calls you excessively, uses obscene or threatening language, or just uses silence to intimidate you, it can be termed as a harassing phone call. These phone calls tend to take away your peace of mind and can cause stress in your life. It is an invasion of your privacy that may turn into a frightening experience. Therefore, one should find ways to stop such calls.
Stopping Harassing Phone Calls
Harassment is a crime that is a punishable offense similar to gross misdemeanor or felony. It should be taken seriously and you must make sure that you let everyone you trust know that someone is harassing you through phone calls.
You need to call the local phone company and let them know that someone is repeatedly calling you to harass. The company won't act if you receive just one or two harassing calls. If the number of calls is more and frequent, the company will immediately take some action. The local phone company may have a policy to first call the phone company or may inform the police first. You should call the phone company's business center first and let them know about the harassment. You may also have to file a formal complaint before the phone company can take any action to stop such calls.
In case the phone calls are obscene and your life or property is at stake, call the police immediately. You should let them know all the details, such as if you knew who was calling, whether the person was intoxicated, etc. Once the phone company takes note of your harassing phone calls, they will tap your phone line. You are now supposed to keep a track of the number of times the person calls you, the time of the call, and date of the call received.
You may also avail the facility of 'Call Trace' to trace the harassing calls. You may have to pay a fee for availing this facility. However, many times the phone company may suggest call trace and you may not have to pay the fee. Be sure you ask the company regarding this facility and its payment. The information collected by 'Call Trace' will be forwarded directly to the law enforcement agency handling your case.
Steps to Stop Harassing Cell Phone Calls
When you receive a call from the number of the person who is harassing you, simply hang up. Do not say anything in shock or express anger. Many times, it may happen that someone is just trying to have some fun and your retaliation gives them an opportunity to trouble you more. If this does not work, you can activate your voice mail system and play a warning message that states that because of receiving harassing phone calls, the phone company has tapped your phone. If the person calling does not leave a message, you can assume that he/she is the culprit. This might probably scare the caller and would make him/her stop from harassing you further.
You can even register yourself with the National Do Not Call Registry that will help you stop the phone calls from telemarketers. You can even stop these calls by activating 'selective call block' in your cell phone. There are many softwares available for cell phones that help in stopping such phone calls. You can get one such software installed on your cell phone to get rid of this annoyance.
Stopping Harassing Phone Calls from Creditors
If you are receiving harassing phone calls from creditors, you can simply disconnect the call without saying anything. Or you can say that you have invoked your rights under the fair Debt Collection Practices Act and ask them not to call you again. They should now communicate with you in writing only. In this case too, you can again use your voice mail service and repeat the message above stating that you have activated call trace and the call is being recorded. Do not worry that you maybe breaking any law by not speaking to your creditor collectors. You have a law to protect you from harassing practices. The Fair Debt Collection Protection Act helps you against such phone calls from creditors.
You need to contact the local authorities if you receive any type of harassing phone calls. The calls affect not only your personal life, but even those around you. Take steps to stop such calls and live your life in peace.