Spam calls are an issue almost everywhere in the U.S., but some states are targeted more than others. These are the top 10 states with the highest spam call rates, according to voice security company Hiya’s Q3 2023 Global Call Threat Report.
- New Hampshire: 21.45%
- Oklahoma: 21.41%
- Texas: 21.22%
- Ohio: 21.04%
- Indiana: 20.67%
- Wyoming: 20.32%
- Kentucky: 19.83%
- Nebraska: 19.74%
- North Carolina: 19.66%
- Kansas: 19.44%
There are few things that elicit more anger than spam calls. It’s possible you could get more spam calls in a day than from real people that you know. These fraudsters cause unneeded stress – especially when the caller poses as a bank representative and says your account has been “compromised.”
Even if you’re familiar with the scam tactics, you might still get that twinge of fear, and that’s exactly what the criminals are hoping for. Manipulating your emotions makes it easier to steal from you.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, imposter scams are the most common type of scam in New Hampshire – the state with the highest spam call rate – but residents have also reported encountering schemes related to healthcare and contests as well as phone and internet services, job opportunities, and travel.
These irritating – and illegal – calls aren’t just specific to the U.S.. Hiya’s third quarter report showed that some of the world’s highest spam call rates were in Chile (57%), Indonesia (56.5%), Argentina (56%) and Hong Kong (56%). In the US, 22.3% of unknown calls were spam, according to Hiya.
The FTC, Federal Communications Commision, and other government agencies have been battling illegal telemarketing schemes for decades. The continuously changing technological landscape makes eradicating the problem almost impossible, with scammers changing their techniques to avoid the defenses put up by carriers and government agencies.
There are steps you can take to protect yourself. AARP has a list of tips to avoid getting scammed like signing up for the FTC’s National Do Not Call Registry as well as using a call-blocking mobile app or screening your calls. Your smartphone might already have a feature built in to flag suspected spam. The group also advises you to hang up on illegal robocalls, not answer numbers you don’t recognize, and not provide financial or personal information over the phone.