Tired of robocalls? Here are some tips to make them stop

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 smartphone
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 smartphone (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Before you download that new app, you should probably think twice about what information you're giving up. It could lead to not only more spam but those dreaded robocalls. 

Even if an app says it's free, in most cases the app can use your personal data as payment and selling that information to third parties who can use it for whatever they want.

The apps on your phone can access your phone number, email address and in some cases your exact location. But it's up to you whether you want to share it.

"Apps will ask for different kinds of permission depending on what they are trying to legitimately do," said Bree Fowler, Consumer Reports Smartphone Expert. "A mapping app does need to legitimately need to know your location but maybe that silly game you like to play doesn't."

And before you give out your phone number, be wary it could land in the hands of a robocaller. Last month 150 million robocalls were made every day.

"Robocallers will purchase the user list, the phone number list from any available source," said Chris Hamer, a security expert. "Accumulating that data, it represents a commodity to them and the robocallers are more than happy to purchase it."

There are apps like Privacy Pro that will look at what the apps are tracking, but you can check for yourself just by looking in the settings portion of your phone. Go into each of the apps and see what information you gave to each app when you signed up. If you don't like it, take it off, but just remember if you take something off the app may not be able to work.

The choice is yours.


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