Phone Weirdness

Timble2

Imaginary Person
Joined
Feb 9, 2003
Messages
5,974
Location
In a Liminal Zone
I've had five cold calls today, one was from the RNIB, so I said a polite no to them (I support Guide Dogs). I found that you can get into quite complex arguments with the ones trying to sell warranties for electrical appliances, so I've been stringing them along 'til i get bored, and I had one who claimed to have permission to call back from my partner (me) as I was pretending to be my partner (imaginary). It improves your voice acting and improv skills, and ties them up.

I've adopted the principles that all cold callers are lying, and that no-one ever lost money by telling a cold caller to "piss off".
 
Last edited:

hunck

Antediluvian
Joined
Jul 13, 2011
Messages
7,496
Location
Hobbs End
If you've registered with the telephone preference thingy you can be pretty sure the call is from abroad. You also get an 'out of area' message on the phone. I leave the answer machine to kick in & they end the call at that point.
 

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
Joined
Sep 18, 2001
Messages
47,569
Location
Inside a starship, watching puny humans from afar
I've had five cold calls today, one was from the RNIB, so I said a polite no to them (I support Guide Dogs). I found that you can get into quite complex arguments with the ones trying to sell warranties for electrical appliances, so I've been stringing them along 'til i get bored, and I had one who claimed to have permission to call back from my partner (me) as I was pretending to be my partner (imaginary). It improves your voice acting and improv skills, and ties them up.

I've adopted the principles that all cold callers are lying, and that no-one ever lost money by telling a cold caller to "piss off".
You legend!
 

Yorkieboybob

Fresh Blood
Joined
Feb 26, 2020
Messages
3
I get regular calls from Microsoft, telling me that my PC is infected with a virus and spyware. All I need to do to fix the problem is to run a small program (event Viewer) to see how many issues my PC has. Event viewer reports hundreds of messages, very few of which are real problems, but it will scare the non-techy types. I like to play along with the scammers - I am a techy type.
I sit in front of my linux machine (nice of Microsoft to fix a Linux Machine - but hey, they are the good guys, right?) and see how long I can keep them on the phone.
My record is 43 minutes. I was even passed on to a senior technician because the guy that rang me couldnt figure out why he couldnt connect to my machine. The senior technician passed me on to a supervisor, and after 5 minutes I had to come clean that I was on linux and knew he was trying to hijack my machine (I needed the loo or I would have kept on longer). The supervisor actually had the cheek to tell me off for wasting their time!
 

PeteS

Seeking refuge
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2,607
I get regular calls from Microsoft, telling me that my PC is infected with a virus and spyware. All I need to do to fix the problem is to run a small program (event Viewer) to see how many issues my PC has. Event viewer reports hundreds of messages, very few of which are real problems, but it will scare the non-techy types. I like to play along with the scammers - I am a techy type.
I sit in front of my linux machine (nice of Microsoft to fix a Linux Machine - but hey, they are the good guys, right?) and see how long I can keep them on the phone.
My record is 43 minutes. I was even passed on to a senior technician because the guy that rang me couldnt figure out why he couldnt connect to my machine. The senior technician passed me on to a supervisor, and after 5 minutes I had to come clean that I was on linux and knew he was trying to hijack my machine (I needed the loo or I would have kept on longer). The supervisor actually had the cheek to tell me off for wasting their time!
There are some really funny characters on You Tube who bait these scam callers for hours at a time. Amazing how angry these scammers get.
 

Comfortably Numb

Antediluvian
Joined
Aug 7, 2018
Messages
8,949
Location
Phone
There are some really funny characters on You Tube who bait these scam callers for hours at a time.
On which very subject, I came across this - goodness knows how and why - just the other week and found it again:


My initial reason for mentioning something on this thread, is that I recently managed to lose my mobile behind a seat cushion, must have leaned on the screen and inexplicably reset the ring tone.

It was late at night, half asleep and my daughter called and from somewhere unbeknownst at the time I heard..

'cuckoo'... 'cuckoo'..

It didn't occur this might be from my phone - not a ring tone I use or ever would.

Of course because the source was disguised with my phone being hidden, it took quite a while before I could make any sense of where the repeated, 'cuckoo'... 'cuckoo'.. call was coming from.

I almost opened the window to check...

True story and so is this.

I forgot to change the ring tone back and next morning I was in a busy TESCO when my phone rang in my pocket...

'cuckoo'... 'cuckoo'..

I swear, everyone within hearing distance started looking upwards...
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
27,793
Location
Out of Bounds
Authorities and the phone company in Akita City (Japan) are trying to figure out how inexplicable calls have been made to the local fire department's emergency number for years.
Spike in empty houses calling the fire department in Akita City baffles authorities

From time to time emergency hotline operators will receive a call during where no one responds on the other end. This presents a difficult problem as it could be a prank, an accidental dial, or someone in grave danger and unable to communicate. But sometimes it’s something completely unexplainable.

In Akita City too, every once in a while a call will come into the fire department’s 119 emergency number, but rather than a voice the operator can only hear various mechanical buzzing and rumbling sounds. ...

Although rare, happening about once or twice a year, these phantom calls are considered a normal part of the job and probably due to a technical glitch. Each time, protocol dictates that the operator hang up, then call back. If the line is busy or no one answers, then firefighters are sent to investigate it as a potential emergency.

Since May of this year, however, cases of phones seemingly calling 119 by themselves have spiked to nine within the city. The calls occur at various times of the day, always from a landline, and often when the residents aren’t even home. ...

NTT East have been looking into the matter since September, but still no explanation has been found. Meanwhile the Akita fire chief inspected their 119 system and found everything to be in order. He also told media, “This is just my opinion, but based on what I’ve seen, I think it is from really old equipment like ‘black telephones’ that still haven’t upgraded to touchtone.” ...

However a lot of unanswered questions remain: Why is it suddenly increasing now? Why is it only happening in Akita? Also, why has the police hotline, which is 110 and seemingly equally susceptible to these mystery calls, not received any? ...

FULL STORY: https://soranews24.com/2020/11/09/s...department-in-akita-city-baffles-authorities/
 

dr wu

Doctor Prog
Joined
Mar 12, 2002
Messages
2,390
Location
Indiana
My wife and I get at least two scam/marketing calls a day...we still have a private land line.
I used to play with the callers...sometimes acting like a demon from hell with an Exorcist voice and other times I would pretend they accidentally called a 'spy center'. I would say, "You have reached the Major...what is your code name?" I stole that from 3 Days of the Condor...a spy film.
They would usually hang up and never wanted to banter with me.
 

Cloudbusting

Little bird
Joined
Jul 19, 2020
Messages
518
I've got a little tale about 'phone weirdness'. Tbh it's nothing major and until recently I'd thought of it as funny rather than odd, but here we go...

About 5-10 years ago myself and my partner went to Jersey one summer for a relatively cheap, easy holiday. Upon arriving at our hotel we checked in and went to our room to find that it wasn't right and generally didn't seem to be in good condition, so for the first and only time before or since at a hotel, we decided to ask if we could swap rooms. I think my partner either took the number from the hotel room information book or did an automatic dial on the phone, (unfortunately I can't remember now) and rang the reception. They said no problem but that it may be a little while as they were sorting out arrivals. We didn't mind and patiently waited, watching the TV.

An hour and a half passed and we decided to ring again to check they hadn't forgotten about us. The receptionist was completely confused, saying that she'd sent someone up a while ago and they'd come back saying that the people in the room had told them that they didn't want to move rooms. We confirmed the room number again (it was the one they'd went to) and she said she'd send somebody up straight away. We waited for another 30-40 minutes... no sign of anyone... so my partner went down to the reception. He came back with someone fairly quickly and explained they were all really confused as they had no clue about any of these phones calls, but thankfully they were more than happy to move us straight away. The new room was spot on and the rest of the stay was fine, and we laughed at times times thinking, 'who on earth were we calling, some poor random sods (hotel staff and guests) were a bit harassed that day weren't they?' However, looking back it was a bit odd really.

I think there are probably 4 possible explanations:
1) The hotel staff couldn't be bothered, or didn't want to move us, and had hoped we'd go away. However I don't think this is the case because they were apologetic and seemed genuinely confused about what had happened. Plus they were more than happy to move us, and the new room was spot on.
2) We'd contacted a second reception at the hotel, however I don't think one existed. We never saw one and the reception staff never suggested we could have accidentely reached a different reception.
3) We accidentally contacted another hotel. I wish I could remember for definite where we got the number. There is a slim possibility we got it online but we definitely would have used the hotel room information book or the telephone itself (usually there's a speed dial for reception). We only would have looked online as a last resort. Nothing on either of these calls made my partner think that he'd rang the wrong hotel, and he knew what hotel we were at.
4) The fortean explanation: We rang the hotel... in a parallel dimension! :litg:

I think the most likely explanation is number 3, although it seems unlikely to some extent. Either way it's likely that there's someone out there, somewhere, with an odd/irate tale about how a hotel they were staying at were determined to move them to another room due to some mysterious, but persistent phone calls. :rollingw:
 

PeteS

Seeking refuge
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2,607
I've got a little tale about 'phone weirdness'. Tbh it's nothing major and until recently I'd thought of it as funny rather than odd, but here we go...

About 5-10 years ago myself and my partner went to Jersey one summer for a relatively cheap, easy holiday. Upon arriving at our hotel we checked in and went to our room to find that it wasn't right and generally didn't seem to be in good condition, so for the first and only time before or since at a hotel, we decided to ask if we could swap rooms. I think my partner either took the number from the hotel room information book or did an automatic dial on the phone, (unfortunately I can't remember now) and rang the reception. They said no problem but that it may be a little while as they were sorting out arrivals. We didn't mind and patiently waited, watching the TV.

An hour and a half passed and we decided to ring again to check they hadn't forgotten about us. The receptionist was completely confused, saying that she'd sent someone up a while ago and they'd come back saying that the people in the room had told them that they didn't want to move rooms. We confirmed the room number again (it was the one they'd went to) and she said she'd send somebody up straight away. We waited for another 30-40 minutes... no sign of anyone... so my partner went down to the reception. He came back with someone fairly quickly and explained they were all really confused as they had no clue about any of these phones calls, but thankfully they were more than happy to move us straight away. The new room was spot on and the rest of the stay was fine, and we laughed at times times thinking, 'who on earth were we calling, some poor random sods (hotel staff and guests) were a bit harassed that day weren't they?' However, looking back it was a bit odd really.

I think there are probably 4 possible explanations:
1) The hotel staff couldn't be bothered, or didn't want to move us, and had hoped we'd go away. However I don't think this is the case because they were apologetic and seemed genuinely confused about what had happened. Plus they were more than happy to move us, and the new room was spot on.
2) We'd contacted a second reception at the hotel, however I don't think one existed. We never saw one and the reception staff never suggested we could have accidentely reached a different reception.
3) We accidentally contacted another hotel. I wish I could remember for definite where we got the number. There is a slim possibility we got it online but we definitely would have used the hotel room information book or the telephone itself (usually there's a speed dial for reception). We only would have looked online as a last resort. Nothing on either of these calls made my partner think that he'd rang the wrong hotel, and he knew what hotel we were at.
4) The fortean explanation: We rang the hotel... in a parallel dimension! :litg:

I think the most likely explanation is number 3, although it seems unlikely to some extent. Either way it's likely that there's someone out there, somewhere, with an odd/irate tale about how a hotel they were staying at were determined to move them to another room due to some mysterious, but persistent phone calls. :rollingw:
That is really weird. I'm with the parallel dimension theory. Could of course be that you're in the parallel dimension. Now that would be interesting.
 

Lb8535

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Sep 2, 2015
Messages
2,467
Yesterday I put my phone on a table and went out to do some chores for about a half hour. Came back in and a few minutes later the phone rang, it was a stranger and he said that I had just called him. I said not me, haven't called anyone for hours, phone was put away. Funny he said, I just hit the call back button. We both hung up. I looked at my phone a few minutes later, no outgoing calls all day, no incoming call that afternoon. I mused that my number had been stolen by some scammer who was using it to call other people. But that doesn't explain the incoming call which I did indeed receive. The guy sounded like a normal person, definitely US accent, didn't try to sell me anything or want to talk. I don't really follow that matrix thing,
 

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
Joined
Sep 18, 2001
Messages
47,569
Location
Inside a starship, watching puny humans from afar
Yesterday I put my phone on a table and went out to do some chores for about a half hour. Came back in and a few minutes later the phone rang, it was a stranger and he said that I had just called him. I said not me, haven't called anyone for hours, phone was put away. Funny he said, I just hit the call back button. We both hung up. I looked at my phone a few minutes later, no outgoing calls all day, no incoming call that afternoon. I mused that my number had been stolen by some scammer who was using it to call other people. But that doesn't explain the incoming call which I did indeed receive. The guy sounded like a normal person, definitely US accent, didn't try to sell me anything or want to talk. I don't really follow that matrix thing,
I got a text from a complete stranger who addressed me by a different name. Could be a simple mistake, or it could be a phishing attempt. I've had that phone for over 12 years and this is the first such occurrence in all that time.
 

Lb8535

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Sep 2, 2015
Messages
2,467
I got a text from a complete stranger who addressed me by a different name. Could be a simple mistake, or it could be a phishing attempt. I've had that phone for over 12 years and this is the first such occurrence in all that time.
That could just be a typo. If I rely on my caller saying he automatically dialed the last call received, then we have to assume that his phone made an internal typo.
 

michael59

Justified & Incandecent
Joined
Aug 10, 2017
Messages
1,706
That could just be a typo. If I rely on my caller saying he automatically dialed the last call received, then we have to assume that his phone made an internal typo.

That is very strange. Stuff like that makes the hair on the back of my neck crawl.

Did I ever mention that when I had a cordless phone a few years back, I kept getting calls from myself?
 

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
Joined
Sep 18, 2001
Messages
47,569
Location
Inside a starship, watching puny humans from afar
I'm still getting the weirdness with my landline (line noise and rude interruptions from a 3rd party). Mentioned it to my friend today and he said he'd had the same issues with his landline, which is why he mostly just uses the mobile these days. He reckons that the phone companies have neglected the landlines.
 

Mungoman

Mostly harmless...
Joined
Feb 25, 2010
Messages
2,811
Location
In the Bush (Peak Hill, NSW)
I get quite a number of Phone calls that miss me, because the phone is elsewhere and I'm not, and when I return the call, a voice tells me that the number I am calling is disconnected........................
 

IbisNibs

Exotic animal, sort of . . .
Joined
Oct 30, 2016
Messages
2,596
Location
Outside my comfort zone.
Apparently, robo calls can spoof disconnected numbers:
https://hackaday.com/2018/11/12/hello-and-please-dont-hang-up-the-scourge-of-robocalls/
"These calls are either just dead air, or recordings that start with “Please don’t hang up.” Out of curiosity, I’ve called back on the number the call claims to be from. Each time, the message is that this number has been disconnected and is no longer in service. This sounds like the plot of a budget horror movie, how am I being called from a disconnected number? Rather than a phantom in the wires, this is robocalling, combined with caller ID spoofing."
 

PeteS

Seeking refuge
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
2,607
Apparently, robo calls can spoof disconnected numbers:
https://hackaday.com/2018/11/12/hello-and-please-dont-hang-up-the-scourge-of-robocalls/
"These calls are either just dead air, or recordings that start with “Please don’t hang up.” Out of curiosity, I’ve called back on the number the call claims to be from. Each time, the message is that this number has been disconnected and is no longer in service. This sounds like the plot of a budget horror movie, how am I being called from a disconnected number? Rather than a phantom in the wires, this is robocalling, combined with caller ID spoofing."
It's a common tactic used by scammers. They have started to use random local numbers with the appropriate STD Code or mobile numbers, on the basis that you are more likely to pick up. Apparently they have the facility to use completely fictitious numbers, so that if you did ring back the number is not recognized. I seem to recall that someone on here told us that their phone had the ability to use "one use only" numbers as well.
 

escargot

Disciple of Marduk
Joined
Aug 24, 2001
Messages
38,621
Location
HM The Tower of London
Our house phone gets a lot of nuisance/spam calls. I check them on WhoCalledMe.

The numbers are usually either withheld (so sometimes possibly overseas) or apparently from British landlines.

However, our house phone records most withheld numbers on its 'received calls' list so I can look them up.

I pick up the phone and look at the display. If the number is unfamiliar I don't hit 'talk', answer, just give it a minute and listen for a message. If we get one it's often spam.
 

Iris

Justified & Ancient
Joined
May 22, 2004
Messages
2,436
The spammers h.ere all seem to be using recorded messages lately
.Seeing that most tell me Telstra is going to cut off my internet unless I press certain numbers and I use another company it doesn't do them much good.
My daughter even gets them at work and she tells them to go ahead which confuses them no end.
She told me they spend a great deal each month making sure their line is ok and if there are any problems a solution is found that day as Telstra don't want to lose their contract.
 

escargot

Disciple of Marduk
Joined
Aug 24, 2001
Messages
38,621
Location
HM The Tower of London
On which very subject, I came across this - goodness knows how and why - just the other week and found it again:


My initial reason for mentioning something on this thread, is that I recently managed to lose my mobile behind a seat cushion, must have leaned on the screen and inexplicably reset the ring tone.

It was late at night, half asleep and my daughter called and from somewhere unbeknownst at the time I heard..

'cuckoo'... 'cuckoo'..

It didn't occur this might be from my phone - not a ring tone I use or ever would.

Of course because the source was disguised with my phone being hidden, it took quite a while before I could make any sense of where the repeated, 'cuckoo'... 'cuckoo'.. call was coming from.

I almost opened the window to check...

True story and so is this.

I forgot to change the ring tone back and next morning I was in a busy TESCO when my phone rang in my pocket...

'cuckoo'... 'cuckoo'..

I swear, everyone within hearing distance started looking upwards...
I once attached a neighing/galloping horse ringtone to a horsey friend's number and forgot all about it. Next time she rang me I was driving and thought a runaway steed was about to overtake! Quite puzzling for a while.
 

IbisNibs

Exotic animal, sort of . . .
Joined
Oct 30, 2016
Messages
2,596
Location
Outside my comfort zone.
Another fun, unsolicited call where no message was left. I searched the number (971-413-XXXX) and found the site* below:

XXXX XXXX  XXXX.jpg

*Actual number obscured to protect the privacy of any real people who might be legitimately associated with it.
 
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