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Messing with robocallers

anyone else mash the buttons?

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#1 systems_glitch

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 03:24 PM

We get robocalls a lot on the business line that rings to my desk. Rather than just hang up, I usually mash buttons to see if I can get the IVR on the other end to do anything interesting. So far, I've gotten several to crash and drop the line with random button-mashing, one to drop to dialtone (tried to dial 918004444444 and figure out where it was, just hung up on me), and one to drop to hold music, then to operator.

Anyone else mess with them and get interesting results?

#2 ThoughtPhreaker

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Posted 15 December 2012 - 02:51 AM

A couple years ago, I'd had a new pair installed, and hadn't yet put it on the do not call registry. So sure enough, I ended up getting tons of robocalls.

Later that week as I'm getting ready to head out, a robocaller decides to drop by. So as a spur of the moment thing, I decide to take a stab at their call status detection software; I sorta half wondered what would happen if it wasn't presented with someone saying hello/a voicemail/fax machine. So I answered the call and muted it, fully expecting the software to just deliver it's pitch anyway since it saw the call supe.

Nothing happened.

A few minutes passed by and still it sat there, waiting for me to say something. So I left the call silently offhook and headed off.

Several hours later, I come back home and to my surprise, the robocall is still sitting there! By now, I figure they'd earned their right to at least give a pitch, so I pick up and say hello. Nothing comes back, so I try hitting a few buttons, and then flashing. The stutter dialtone indicated it was definitely still there, but it was just, well, silent!

To this day, I still wonder if this is standard behavior for any kind of predictive dialing software; I haven't had a chance to try it again. I like the idea that doing something so lazy can waste their money and resources, though.

Edited by ThoughtPhreaker, 15 December 2012 - 02:56 AM.


#3 phreeman

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 07:08 PM

I wrote dialplan to handle them. If I don't recognize a number (or if I turn on cross checking my phonebook) I reject it, then it's forwarded over to my robocontrol number. Which first checks to see if the call is blocked, then unblocks and sends it right back to me if so, if not blocked, then it checks to see if the caller is whitelisted or not. If they are, then the caller is forwarded to an external voicemail with call diversion set. If they are not whitelisted then it proceeds and pat fleet is all "Im sorry, the subscriber you are calling does not accept unsolicited calls. To verify yourself, please answer the following: What is, what is, 2+2

 

5 is also a valid answer.. But it does a random math problem thats simple. Its one of six different math problems. If they answer it correctly, the callerid is appended and number whitelisted, then routed back to me. If they do not answer it, then they are blacklisted, (which can be toggled off) and an email report is sent out to a special email address. 

 

Its pretty good. I like it. I was going to submit it for the FTC robochallenge fearness but I was moving and forgot to hit submit.. 

 

BTW the robocontrol number cannot be dialed directly.. It needs to have a call diversion of where the call was forwarded from to get past the playtones hangup. 


Edited by phreeman, 10 March 2013 - 07:11 PM.





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