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How To Block a Phone Number from Calling your Cell Phone

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July 27th, 2009

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By Ari Driessen

Do you have your own personal stalker or an ex-boyfriend (or girlfriend) who just won’t accept that it’s O-V-E-R? Perhaps a persistent telemarketer? Sure, there does come a point when hitting the ‘ignore’ button on your phone just doesn’t cut it anymore. Well, depending on your carrier and cell phone model, there may be a solution that you can dial in.

Unmask Blocked or Unknown Numbers

Recently, I was getting harassed by a blocked number on AT&T. Since the number was blocked, I couldn’t provide the number to AT&T to block them from calling me. To my surprise, AT&T did not have a way of seeing which number was calling me. The robocalls became so frequent that I thought I would have to change the phone number I’ve had for 15 years. Luckily, I found out about an app that works on both iPhone and Android called TrapCall that allows you to unmask the number, and even block it if you want. The app was a lifesaver, as I was able to figure out which number was calling me, and then provide it to AT&T for them to block. TrapCall offers a free trial which will allow you to unmask the number you need, and then you can cancel. If you want to keep using it to blacklist numbers and take advantage of their other features, it’s just $4.99 per month. Sign up for TrapCall here.

Carrier Options

AT&T: If you have AT&T Wireless, you’re in luck. Although this luck will come at the price of $4.99 per month, AT&T offers a service called Parental Controls that will allow you to limit “who the phone can call or text (incoming and outgoing) by blocking or allowing certain numbers.” After a month of subscribing to this service, your tireless caller will likely get the hint that that their calls won’t be going through anytime soon, and hopefully throw in the towel.

Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon: Sprint offers online call blocking if you login to your user portal on their website. Verizon will block up to 5 numbers for 90 days, but after that you will have to pay a small monthly fee. Currently, these providers do not offer the ability to block a specific number from calling. T-Mobile currently does not offer a native way to block numbers from calling or texting your mobile phone.

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“Do Not Call” Registry

If your offender is a telemarketer, stop them in their tracks by registering with the National Do Not Call Registry. It is illegal for telemarketers to call you after you have been added to this list. Allow 31 days for your registration to take effect, and if the calls still don’t stop, file a complaint.

Handset-specific Options

Depending on what cell phone model you have, there may be a built-in or downloadable option to limit incoming calls. Some Nokia devices, for example, are compatible with an application called BlackList. There are several options available for Windows Mobile devices as well. Try performing a quick google search for “[name of your device] + block calls”.

YouMail

Your phone may be compatible with a free service called YouMail. With YouMail you can block unwated voicemail messages. “And you can do it with a very formal “This number is no longer in service…” type of message or something more errrr, personal – it’s up to you. The callers you ditch get the designated greeting you choose and are never given the option of leaving a voicemail message. And so the buzzing stops!”

Deception

You’ve tried politely and not-so-politely to tell the caller that their calls are not wanted, but to no avail. Well, desperate times call for desperate measures. Try tricking your caller into believing that either you have blocked their number or that your line has been disconnected. Have a friend with a mature sounding voice record a new outgoing voicemail message for you. Try something to the effect of “Message W26: The number you are trying to reach has been disconnected. If you believe this message is in error, please hang up and try your call again later.”

Be sure to leave plenty of empty space after the recording so the caller will hang up before the voicemail “beeps.” If your message is convincing, chances are that after a couple tries the caller will give up.

Forward Your Calls

It’s not a perfect solution, but if you can tolerate not getting incoming calls for a couple days, try forwarding all your calls to a different number. Send calls to a string of digits like “555″ so the caller will get an error message, or even send your calls to the Pizza Hut in Nowhere, Alaska. They might get the hint.

Change Your Number

If all else fails, it may be time to face the music. If the caller doesn’t know your number, they can’t call you. Give your wireless carrier a call, explain the situation, and ask them for a new number. There’s a chance they may even take pity on you and wave the charges to change your number.

Shop now for cheap cell phones. See all of our great deals onAT&T Cell Phones, Prepaid Cell Phones, Sprint Cell Phones, TMobile Phones and Verizon Cell Phones.

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64 Responses to “How To Block a Phone Number from Calling your Cell Phone”

  • Robert K
    October 7, 2013

    Most phones have a feature where you can turn the number off by phone number. Granted these guys are constantly shifting numbers, but I have turned the ringer off for 45 numbers and it seems to be helping. The second line of defense is not to answer any call with no caller ID by name. If they leave no message I look the number up on line. If it turns out to be legit I enter the caller’s name. Sometimes I answer. They usually ask “How are you today”. Usually you can tell by the accent if they are a scammer. I usually ask “What difference does it make?’ In the brief silent period that follows ask for the name of their company and their name and address. Keep repeating the question until they answer. If they do not, tell them you do not deal with dishonest people, goodbye. Then turn the ringer off for that number.

  • Candace S
    October 5, 2013

    My husband has a prepaid iphone from verizon and he can block callers straight from his contact list. I have a prepaid windows from att. The $4.99 per month parental control that att offers only works on contract phones. I’m pretty much stuck either changing my number or buying a different phone and switching carriers.

  • erin averyt
    May 5, 2013

    Dose any one Know if Verizon ? offers a blocked number
    option? I’ve been gettign calls from a caller who i no longer
    want calling me they call me 247 I have aske them
    nicely to stop calling me even my parents have asked this young man to stop
    calling me I don’t know what else to do
    Please help.

  • erin averyt
    May 5, 2013

    Hi dose ATT home phone offer any blocked numbers?
    becuase there is this guy he calls me 247 and never leaves a message

  • How do I block calls on my Verizon cell phone. I’ve tried a few options, but, they don’t work,HELP.

  • We run a small business and we have several phones, but one is an “antique” cell phone (Samsung flip phone) that we only use for incoming calls. One telemarketer is relentless in calling, sometimes 6-8 times a day looking for “the owner”. We’ve asked them to stop without success. Our carrier is AT&T. I added this telemarketer’s number to my “reject” list on this old phone. Since I’ve never done this before, will this stop the calls from coming through? We can’t change the cell number as it is the one our customers use to call us. Thanks.

  • I have a LG phone and my carrier is Net10.I don’t know how to block text messages from unwanted numbers.I think it’s possible my number belonged to another phone perhaps by mistake and I’m receiving their junk.I don’t know,I read other phones can use a firewall or something or only get messages from my contact list, but my phone isn’t that updated.It’s pretty much basic.

  • Hello, is there an number block application that when applied the (blocked) caller receives a message saying something like: ‘The person that you are dialing does not want to talk to you’? I was recently calling to a person in Germany and I got a speaker saying this (n.b. that my german is not so perfect). I am wondering whether is a block-application or just the phone company’s registered message…

  • Ni Babe
    August 2, 2012

    YOU CAN block specific incoming calls with Verizon Wireless. I just recently did it. If you log into your Verizon account (www.verizonwireless.com) and type: Call & Message Blocking into the search area in the top right hand corner, it will allow you to add up to 5 numbers to be blocked.

    • frederick walker
      July 22, 2013

      1000 thank you’s – saved me a lot of trouble!

    • This is correct……there are actually 2 ways with Verizon Wireless. The first is a 90 day block that is free and blocks 5 numbers. If you still need to block the number after 90 days you have to go thru the steps again. the second way costs $5 per month but block up to 20 numbers….you find this under Usage Controls. Thanks Ni for posting your message, it is how I learned about blocking harassing calls and texts.

    • I have a straight phone. Can I block numbers with a straight phone? If so, how?

    • John Sullivan
      July 30, 2014

      Big deal. Five numbers is an absurdly low number. Even if you pay more, it’s only up to 20 numbers that can be blocked. You should be able to block any call without limitation on the numbers or block any call where the caller’s identity is blocked.

  • Bob Smith
    July 28, 2012

    On my Samsung, I can make my number Private when I call, so they don’t see my number when I dial out.

  • joshua denstedt
    July 15, 2012

    how do you block a verizon phone number with a verizon cell phone

    • Hi Joshua,
      Each phone is going to be a little bit different. You should go in to the call log and select the number you want to block and then select the menu. From the menu it should have a option for call options. You should be able to select block in that menu. If you are still having trouble with this you can stop in to your local Verizon Wireless store and they can assist you.
      -Scott at Wirefly

    • Ni Babe
      August 2, 2012

      If you log into your Verizon account (www.verizonwireless.com) and type: Call & Message Blocking into the search area in the top right hand corner, it will allow you to add up to 5 numbers to be blocked.

  • Most newer phones have an option by going thru your menu on the phone. Then settings or tools. You are looking for recent calls or just calls. Sometimes you can choose the call and one of the options is block caller. Other times under Auto Reject you can add a number to the “list”. Best case search for a way to block numbers on your cell phone and not thru you carrier because they usually charge and some limit it to 5 blocked numbers.

  • Melissa
    March 28, 2012

    My life became much easier when I downloaded a very simple app blocking telemarketer, prank, etc. calls. it is free only for 3 numbers for your own blacklist, but anyway you can you use it very successfully to block already reported numbers. Hope you will like it, here is a link – everycall.us/call-control/

  • Nataya
    March 9, 2012

    i have a virgin mobile and it doesnt allow me to block contacts fron callin or txtin my phone besize gettin a new carrier is there and way i can block a contact

    • Nataya, do you have an Android phone or a messaging phone? Some Android phones have a selection to block a specific number, but I don’t know if that can be done on feature/messaging phones. What ever your phone is, stop into a Virgin Mobile store when you get a chance and ask about blocking calls on your specific phone. They should know for sure if it can be done.

      Bob at Wirefly

    • I have a blackberry curve and there has been many people calling and texting me from the same number over and over.. Im just wondering, if anyone know’s how to block a number?

      • Kiki, you don’t mention your carrier, but I would start by going to one of the carrier’s stores and asking there. If you feel the calls/texts you are receiving are more than a minor nuisance, you can report it to your carrier for further action.

        Bob at Wirefly

      • options
        security options
        Firewall

        this allows me to block texts from people not in my contact list, but i still receive calls
        I have a blackberry 8900

  • If i block my ex wifes phone number will i be able to call her or do i have to block my number from calling her

    • Tom, I think you are going to have to ask your carrier about that. The ability to block and consequences of blocking change from carrier to carrier.

      Bob at Wirefly

  • I have to block calls from a particular number… pls suggest.

    • Nitya, you should talk to your carrier. At least one carrier (AT&T) had an option to block a specific phone number but I don’t know if that is still available or if other carriers have the same capability. So, you should stop at one of your carrier’s stores and ask about blocking a specific number.

      Bob at Wirefly

  • t-mobile loves it when u get a stalker because their “block” feature still lets the stalker leave voice mails, and u have to pay $200 to change ur phone number!!!

  • davian mcllm
    December 29, 2011

    I totally agree with you views about blocking someone from calling,yes there are phones with these option but,one thing your forgetting is that they may still call you when using the number hiding option and to you it will appear as private number,i think the best option is that of calling the service provider and letting them know you problem,they are the only ones who can stop those incoming calls either private or via number.

  • i lost my phone so i need to block my no to avoid other miss use my phone no

    • Karti, you should contact your carrier immediately and report your phone as lost. The carrier may be able to help you recover the phone, since they can often track its location.

      Good luck!

      Bob at Wirefly

  • Melissa M
    November 28, 2011

    I would like to block a persons cell phone number from calling my cell phone

    • Your best bet at this point is to look to see who is calling and simply hang up. Only AT&T has a service to block numbers, and that costs extra. If you do not have AT&T, there is no way for a carrier to block a number.

      Bob at Wirefly

  • Ms Right
    October 27, 2011

    This post is mistaken verizon does have a block feature all u have 2 do is call in witht the number you want to block the only issue is that it only workd for 3months and then u have 2 call again and place the # back on block. Also for verizon there is a feature on the actual phone that you can have that # saved in ur phone but evwrytime it calls it wither hangs up or goes straight to voicemail. Know your facts before you post something like thos that so many people read.

    • This post would have been helpful if this person had bothered to explain anything.

    • MisTryst
      November 8, 2011

      Hey, Ms Right-
      Why don’t you read the date of the original article before you bash the information.
      You’re 2 years late with your critique.
      Catch up – at that duration of time passed, anyone with any sense in the cellular market has a different phone after such a time frame and potentially a different wireless provider.
      Take your own advice – Know YOUR facts before you post something that “so many people will read.”

  • Bob Tucker
    October 9, 2011

    This is very interesting to say the least. I have had stalkers off and on for years. I am glad to see technology is catching up.

  • rod stewart
    October 5, 2011

    iam with us cellular how do I get my samsung galaxy s to say the number u called is diconneced and no longer in service

    • Rod, I’m afraid that I don’t know how to do that. You could try going into a US Cellular store and asking them about it.

      Bob at Wirefly

      • us cellural dont help you with that problem since I have called my provider and i was told that they dont try to stop them from hasseling us on our cell phones. I was told that they cant do anything about it. when this contract is done i am changing courriers.

  • Shania Prevette
    October 1, 2011

    Verizon has the 4.99 plan where you can block spec. numbers from calling and texting up to 20 numbers!!

  • (1)How can I block a particular number from calling my Nokia N70.
    (2)How can I know a person calling with hidden number

    • mercy
      July 1, 2011

      How can I know a person calling with hidden number?

      • Unfortunately, you can’t know who is calling if that person hides the number. I don’t know of a way to display a number that the caller has hidden.

        Bob at Wirefly

  • Kathy Villnow
    December 25, 2010

    I talked to a representative a month or so ago about blocking a number that kept calling my
    cell phone. He told me I could do that on a trial basis on Family Allowances at no cost. And
    said I could cancel it after Dec. 20th & that’s what I’d like to do now—cancel the ablility to block calls myself.
    Thank you, Kathy

  • Sprint has since added the ability to block individual #s from calling and or texting. Or you can block all calls or texts, it seems pretty easy and straightforward to change as needed.

  • Thomas Wandai
    October 19, 2010

    I would like to be advised how to unblock my cellphone make samsumg 3G. Do i take it to the dealer or how do i go about it?

  • sabrina mclendon
    May 27, 2010

    how can you get a rectreced person to stop calling you and how can you find out who it is this person calls every hour and when i try to answear it they hang up when i open my cell phone how do you find out who it is or how to block it

    • MALESELA
      July 29, 2010

      i want to block private/unknown numbers from my Nokia N73 and Nokia E99 cellphones

    • Spoilbrat
      October 29, 2010

      Try trapcall.com it’s 4.99 a month.
      I was getting block calls everyday but, since I have trapcall I get block calls but, soon as they hang up the number call back.
      They was scared now I know.. I don’t have the problem anymore. Goodluck

      • I would like to know how i could block a haressing person’s cell phone from online. i dont want them to know I did it.

  • Navigator
    April 11, 2010

    Of course you can block a number from calling your phone, if you don’t want to receive their calls. I just checked and all the codes you need to manipulate your phone is at http://www.gsmdigits.com

  • deja4you
    April 3, 2010

    on tmobile if you have family allowances you can block certain numbers from calling you.

    • Please show me how to block a person’s number from calling or even texting my phone

  • Use a program like Efficient Call Blocker if you have a Blackberry. BerryWAV makes this. You can make the party think that your number is not in service no more.

  • Naya did you mean “I can’t do anything” ??? “can’t do nothing” is a double negative.

    www hempworx com

  • Blocking a particular caller is fairly easy on my Verizon phone. Simply add the number to your list of contacts, then set the ringtone for that contact to “no ring” and set the phone’s vibrate feature to “off”. However, if you don’t want your vibrate feature turned off for all calls, just leave it on vibrate and don’t answer the offending caller. No one will hear it ring, just the vibration and that is easily ignored. That has been my solution to callers who keep calling over and over but don’t get the message that I don’t want to talk to them. I don’t know how to keep them from leaving a message, but this has worked for me. I use a generic name on my contact such as “Do Not Answer” or “unknown” or “ignore” and I know who the caller is without my phone ringing. Anyway, it has been my solution to this problem.

  • dendelle
    January 21, 2010

    okay..

  • Hairy D. Hacker
    January 18, 2010

    Its not illegal to unlock your phone… It is yours you bought it …
    They can however charge you for services rendered if you use it.
    So unlock your phone get all you paid for it to do and be happy…

    Quit paying the phone company for unlocking something you already own.

    Hairy D. Hacker

  • Amen! to the above. The question is: What do we do about it? I would love to get a pay as you go phone. Unfortunately, I can’t get service for them outside of the city where I live.

  • I agree with Joe!! I have one of these pay as you go phone, I am able to reject numbers I don’t
    want calling-I highlite the # and press “reject” that # will not be able to get through! but with cell phone #2- my calling plan phone (over $100.00) per month I can’t do nothing (without going through changes) and extra $s coming out of my pocket. People out there, buy yourself a $19.00-$49.00 pay as you go phone (add your talk-time with no contract)

  • I like how you pay for their service and for their phones, yet they can not block a number on their own network. Most the time they cut out 90% of your phones features, that you pay for. Then they charge you to change your phone number after being harassed because you can’t block numbers on their network. This is a good example of racketeering! Cellphone companies are getting just as bad as credit card companies.

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