1

I am being plagued by a call back scam, where I get calls from numbers beginning +224 (Guinea), +252 (Somalia) and a few other countries. The call rings once and disconnects, and I suppose I am expected to call them at exorbitant call rates, from which they get a cut (just like calling domestic premium numbers).

This question tells me how to do it using Android settings, but I can't find the setting on my phone. I asked friends to check, in case I had overlooked it, but they can't find it either.

Is there a free Android app to do so? (I'm looking at you @Izzzy ;-)

  • 1
    As you ask me directly, you surely wanted my Call Blocker app list? I'm not using any myself, so I cannot give a direct recommendation (only the hint to "beware": some of the better knowns have privacy issues, eg. TrueCaller and Sync.Me I'd rather avoid). – Izzy Oct 16 '17 at 6:01
  • Urk! I am already using TrueCaller. I accept that I had to tell them who I Am - any other problems? – Mawg Oct 16 '17 at 9:09
  • 1
    Just check the links in my list, I don't remember the details exactly. Something with collecting your data etc. AFAIR. This English warning is two years old, but describing "how it works" should be still valid. Quote: "it simply uploads each and every contact and information linked to it from your phone’s contact list to its servers" (data used ao. for caller info). The article concludes: "it is just privacy risk for almost all users". Read for yourself. – Izzy Oct 16 '17 at 9:15
  • 1
    The article writes about the ability to remove a number. But that could be a hard job with your entire list, and I don't know if there's a guarantee the data will really be deleted from their servers (they could always claim they don't know who else provided it as well, and insist to only remove details on your own record – i.e. your phone number). – Izzy Oct 16 '17 at 9:20
  • 1
    Coincidence? See what just popped up an hour ago at Android.SE: Does TrueCalller App leak your phonebook? And check my comment on the answer ;) – Izzy Oct 16 '17 at 15:19
3

Taking the emphasis on privacy, the most obvious source to look at is F-Droid. So checking my Call Blocker app list with that in mind (simply watch out for F-Droid icons next to the app names), NoPhoneSpam sounds like a good candidate – and meets your requirements (as I understand them):

  • can block calls: sure :)
  • can block by country code: Yes (quote: "Use special syntax to block countries or providers or parts of numbers")
  • respects your privacy: Yes. Minimal permissions (read phone state, calls) – only those really needed. No network permissions.

Just in case, it's also available at Google Play – though I definitely recommend using F-Droid wherever possible (for privacy reasons).

Note, however, that this app hasn't been updated for about a year – which mustn't mean much, of course, as long as it works :)

  • 1
    There were some good answers from Alex, prettier with more features, but if FOSS can get the job done, then it's always my choice. I have installed No Phone Spam and am waiting to test it. – Mawg Oct 16 '17 at 17:02
  • 1
    And do not use TrueCaller because of its privacy leak with your phonebook: android.stackexchange.com/a/184860/9897 – Léo Léopold Hertz 준영 Oct 16 '17 at 18:45
  • Is there any native support coming for phone blocker in Oreo? I cannot trust 3rd party apps with such a basic function. – Léo Léopold Hertz 준영 Oct 16 '17 at 18:51
  • @LéoLéopoldHertz준영 No idea. I don't even run Nougat yet, as XPrivacy no longer supports it (and the Xposed framework wasn't available for it until recently). So I have to delegate that question – which btw is better fitting for Android.SE as it's not asking for a "software recommendation" but a potential feature of some Android version ;) – Izzy Oct 16 '17 at 18:54
  • 1
    @Izzy I extended the feature need discussion here android.stackexchange.com/q/184862/9897 – Léo Léopold Hertz 준영 Oct 16 '17 at 19:00
2

I've seen two apps that seem to be doing what you want:

  1. Call Blocker Free - Blacklist:
    • is free,
    • but contains ads,
    • allows you to block one ring phone scams,
  2. Calls Blacklist - Call Blocker:
    • is free,
    • contains ads,
    • offers in-app purchases,
    • allows you to block numbers starting with, say, a country code.

Btw, I checked and I couldn't find the settings to block callers on my Android phone either. No idea what is up with that.

  • 1
    I have installed both and will trial them for a day to decide which one I should use. Good tips, thanks – Mawg Oct 15 '17 at 11:13
  • First impression, after a few minutes only - NQ Call Blocker Free is very slow, and I can't see its "DETECT AND STOP ONE-RING PHONE SCAM" feature. Calls Blacklist was responsive and intuitive and I easily found the "number begins with ..." option. As soon as it successfully blocks its first call, I will award the anser – Mawg Oct 15 '17 at 11:22
  • From the features listed, I wonder what for "Calls Blacklist" requires access to accounts (incl. authenticate_accounts), Internet, GCM? – Izzy Oct 16 '17 at 16:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.