| Wednesday July 30th 2014

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Free service unmasks Caller ID on blocked incoming calls


Wired.com reports on a service launched today called TrapCall, which unmasks the Caller ID on blocked incoming calls.

TrapCall instructs new customers to reprogram their cellphones to send all rejected, missed and unanswered calls to TrapCall’s own toll-free number. Trapcall logoIf the user sees an incoming call with Caller ID blocked, he just presses the button on the phone that would normally send it to voice mail. The call invisibly loops through TelTech’s system, then back to the user’s phone, this time with the caller’s number displayed as the Caller ID.The caller hears only ringing during this rerouting, which took about six seconds in Wired.com’s test with an iPhone on AT&T. Rejecting the call a second time, or failing to answer it, sends it to the user’s standard voice mail.

Sounds interesting and useful… It’s not all good, though…

The service comes as bad news to advocates for domestic violence victims, who fought hard to make free blocking an option in the early days of Caller ID. “I have huge concerns about that,” says Cindy Southworth, director of technology at the National Network to End Domestic Violence, in Washington, D.C. Southworth fears that abusers will use the new service to locate partners fleeing a violent relationship.In a notable case in 1995, a Texas man named Kevin Roberson shot his ex-girlfriend to death after locating her through the Caller ID device on her roommate’s phone line.

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