When most people think of telephone number spoofing, they often think of telemarketing scammers who hide their actual phone numbers in order to get you to answer their calls. But there are actually a number of good reasons why you would want to legitimately spoof a phone number, and unlike when scammers do it, this is perfectly legal.
In this article, we will describe not only why you may want to spoof a phone number, but also how to spoof a number. In addition, we will also detail the different options that are available and all the steps involved with getting it to work.
Inside This Article
In the United States, certain types of phone number spoofing are illegal. The Caller ID Act, which was signed into law in 2009, makes it a crime to spoof your phone number for the purposes of committing fraud or causing harm to someone. The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) further requires telemarketers to use accurate caller IDs when contacting people. But all other uses of phone number spoofing are legal in the United States and in most other countries.
Here are some of the many reasons you may want to spoof a phone number:
To Conceal Identity
Many professionals have a legitimate need to hide the number that they are calling from, such as a physician. Others may want to mask the location that they are calling from. For example, today, many people work remotely from home. Oftentimes, though, they have to communicate with customers of the company they work for and need to appear as if they are calling from their place of work.
To Reach Someone In An Emergency
We all do it. We get a call from someone we know and ignore it for various reasons. But what if this phone call is an emergency? If you really need to get through to someone and they are not picking up the phone, spoofing your phone number may be your only option. But this should only be done in emergencies.
To Surprise Someone
There are many times when you may want to surprise someone when you call, and this surprise would likely be ruined by caller ID. Spoofing your phone number is a good way to do this, especially If you are trying to surprise your children. Some phone spoofing services and apps will even let you call as Santa Claus or some fictional character from a fairy tale. Some of these will even let you disguise your voice too in various ways.
There are many great phone number spoof apps that will let you make calls for a small fee. For those looking for a way how to spoof a phone number for free, there is both good news and bad news. While many of the apps will allow you to try their service or allow you limited access to what they offer for free, there is no app at the moment that is offering completely free telephone number spoofing.
Here is an overview of the top phone number spoofing apps and directions on how to make a spoof call with them:
SpoofCard is probably the best known of the apps offering phone number spoofing, and it is one of the oldest too. They have an online app for both iOS and Android, and they offer a free spoof call online app that is limited to 60 seconds and to a specific geographical area. The free version also only has a limited set of features.
The full version includes the following features:
- Recording spoofed calls
- Making spoofed calls directly to someone’s voicemail
- Disguising your voice
- Making group spoof calls
- Sending spoofed texts
- Adding background sounds
The company has a monthly subscription and pay-as-you-go plans, and unlike some other services, there is no additional charge to use any of its special features.
SpoofTel offers a service similar to SpoofCard, though it has some notable differences. The most important of these is that instead of you calling the service, it calls you. Also, you have to pay extra to use most of its special features, and its app choices are more limited.
The free online version is limited to three 30-second calls, but apart from geographical restrictions, you can try out all of its features.
In the paid version, there are 4 different ways you can spoof a telephone call. You can dial a 1-800 number, and after entering your PIN, you enter the phone number you want to call, the phone number you want to spoof, and then select whatever special features you want. The service will afterward call you and connect the call. You can also perform these actions within the company’s online app, its desktop app, and its iPhone app. However, keep in mind that the desktop app only works under Windows and the iPhone app only works on a jailbroken phone. There is no Android version of the app, but Android (and iPhone) owners can use the online app.
Spoof My Phone is an alternative to SpoofTel that works almost exactly like it. It also has a free version that requires you to make posts on social media in exchange for free credits.
Their web app has similar features as the other two, with the addition of being able to convert text to speech. The company also offers a set of companion apps it calls Spoofbox, which allows you to spoof email and SMS messages among other things.