Protect your iPhone from unwanted calls

  1. General Telecommunications Law
  2. Alternatives on iPhone against spam

In today’s world where communication through mobile devices is ubiquitous, the rise in spam calls has become a constant problem affecting the iPhone user experience. Although a new telecommunications law took effect last summer to address this specific problem, unwanted commercial calls remain a problem.

General Telecommunications Law

The change to the General Telecommunications Law to eliminate unwanted calls is aimed at eliminating unwanted messages rather than banning all calls entirely. Despite the legislative intent, there are certain exceptions that allow challenges to be accepted in certain circumstances. It is important to understand these exceptions and know when it is legal to receive unsolicited calls.

Exceptions for spam One of the key exceptions is when users have given prior consent to receive commercial calls. Such consent is often given inadvertently by accepting the terms and conditions of certain services without carefully reviewing the information provided. The speed with which we agree to these terms can lead to situations where we believe we have not given consent, but in fact we have.

Another exception occurs when a user unsubscribes from the telephone company’s services. The law sets a period of up to 12 months after cancellation during which operators can try to retain or win back the customer. In this context, calls from the telephone company, even after cancellation, are permitted by law unless the user objects.

Calls made from outside Spain are also excluded. Some companies outsource services outside the country, which involves calls from switchboards from abroad. These calls are not subject to Spanish law and can be made legally. It is important to note that these calls can be identified by observing the absence of the +34 prefix that characterizes Spanish numbers.

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In addition, public interest calls, such as emergencies, are not considered commercial and are therefore not limited by law. Likewise, the National Institute of Statistics (INE) may contact random people to conduct surveys as part of research that is not considered commercial.

It’s important to note that scam calls that try to deceive people by posing as legitimate companies are also an exception. These calls are illegal in themselves because they are fraudulent attempts, but they can be accepted despite existing regulations.

Notwithstanding exceptions permitted by law, users have the right to reject commercial communications at any time. This right shall prevail regardless of whether the user is a customer of the company making the call or not. While prior consent may have been given without full knowledge, users may request that no further commercial calls be made to them during the same call or via email.

It’s important to note that phone companies often provide settings in their apps that allow users to uncheck the option to receive business calls. These settings can also be applied to SMS and email communications, giving users more control over the phone’s performance.

Unlike Android, which has Google’s spam filter, iPhone doesn’t offer a built-in solution to prevent commercial calls. Although iOS can identify these calls, they are still received. However, there are alternatives that iPhone users can use to reduce the impact of unwanted calls.

Alternatives on iPhone against spam

One option is to register with Robinson’s List, a free registry that all commercial communications companies have access to. While this theoretically eliminates the possibility of receiving unwanted calls, experience, both ours and that of others, shows that this is not always effective and that some calls manage to bypass this blocking system.

Another preventative measure in iOS is blocking phone numbers. While this measure will not prevent the first call, it will block all subsequent calls from that number. After receiving a call, users can access the call log, select the “i” icon next to the number and click the “Block this contact” option. You can also block numbers and contacts in your iPhone settings, giving you more control over unwanted calls.

If calls continue after a commercial message has been rejected, users can file a complaint with the Spanish Data Protection Agency (AEPD) using the form on its website. Attaching graphic evidence such as screenshots or recordings will support the claim. AEPD, as a regulator, has the ability to investigate and take action against those organizations that do not comply with privacy and commercial communications regulations.

It is extremely important to note that after rejecting a commercial message, companies must observe a period of about a week to stop calling. If calls continue beyond this period, filing a complaint with AEPD becomes a viable option.

If calls received are scam attempts, it is recommended to file a police report, especially if the user has been a victim of fraud. In such cases, it is critical to gather evidence to prove that the call in question was part of a fraud attempt.

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