The number of mobile scam calls has increased ninefold in the past year and will represent more than 44% of all calls by 2019, according to a report that was issued last week by First Orion, a company that makes the PrivacyStar app that blocks certain calls from being connected to individuals.
In making its prediction, the company said it has analyzed more than 50 billion calls made to First Orion customers during the past 18 months. To help “combat this rapidly growing epidemic,” the company announced that it is releasing a new technology service, called CallPrinting, uses machine learning and real-time analysis to prevent fraudulent calls from being connected to consumers. The technology is scheduled to be rolled out in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to the company.
Collection agencies have been dealing with an influx in the number of calls that are being blocked or are being labeled as scams or possible scams by carriers and services like those provided by First Orion. A recent survey conducted by ACA International showed a drop in contact rates by collection agencies, which can be attributed in part to call blocking technology services that have been deployed by individuals.
Current call-blocking apps are “ineffective” in fighting spoofed calls in which a scammer uses a number similar to the individual’s phone number as a means of making it appear as though the call is legitimate. First Orion’s CallPrinting solution aims to reduce the number of spoofed calls that make it through to a consumer’s cell phone.
“Year after year, the scam call epidemic bombards consumers at record-breaking levels, surpassing the previous year and scammers increasingly invade our privacy at new extremes,” said Charles D. Morgan, CEO and Head Data Scientist of First Orion, said in a statement. “Recently, the FCC joined forces with several technology companies, including First Orion, to find a way to combat these calls, but we still see rampant increases. After working closely with several carriers, we’ve found that in-network solutions that leverage sophisticated data analysis and machine learning are by far the most accurate way to pinpoint the origin of a call and identify it before it reaches your phone.”