Blocking Caller ID
Caller ID is the standard way incoming phone numbers are displayed, but you don’t have to let it identify you. You can easily make your number “Private” or “Restricted” from caller ID just by dialing a few extra digits.
You have two choices to block your number. You can either permanently block your number when making outgoing calls or block your number on a call-by-call basis.
You should know that your number can’t be blocked when calling toll-free (i.e. 1-800) and emergency services (i.e. 911).
Here are the two ways to block Caller ID:
Temporary (Call-by-Call) Block of Caller ID
Dial *67 before the phone number on your cell phone.
For example, dial *67 555 555 5555 (without using spaces). On the receiving end, caller ID will usually display “private number,” “restricted” or “unavailable” because the number has been blocked.
Permanent Block of Caller ID
Just call your phone carrier and ask for a block of Caller ID. With this, your number automatically won’t appear when you call anyone else’s number.
If you temporarily want your number to appear when you have a permanent block of Caller ID, just dial *82 before the number. So, to allow your number to appear on the receiver’s Caller ID would look like *82 555 555 5555 (without the spaces).
You should know, though, that a few people automatically decline calls from phones that block caller ID. In that case, you’d have use the *82 function to get your call through.
You should also know that some savvy techies can defeat the blocked Caller ID by setting up what is called a “trap line” where the call is routed through an 800 line and then back to the original receiver, thus stripping the “block” function (a service we can provide if you are receiving harassing phone calls).
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Paul Baeppler is currently a full-time police lieutenant with 25 years on the job. He also runs several private investigation and security businesses, licensed in Ohio, California and New York.