Dealing with prank or nuisance calls can be a hassle. They may originate from telemarketers and friends. When you pick up your phone, and you find that the incoming call number is private, there are a few ways to find out what the number is. Know that you may have to involve the police or find other legal help in some cases, especially if you feel you are being repeatedly harassed by the caller with the private number. Also, consider calling the police if you receive a threat to your person, your family or property.
Jot down the times and days that you receive calls from the private number. You will be able to better discover patterns in the calls as well as have a written record of the calls.
Contact your phone company, and tell the customer service representative that you are receiving prank or harassing calls from a private number. The representative may be able to help you, or she may request that you get a legal order to obtain the information. The policies of each company are different, so talk to your phone company about how it handles such situations.
Install a program or application that will route private number calls to a service provider that can help you unlock the private number. Some services may send private number calls to themselves, find out the number and send it back to your phone, in the case of mobile phones. TrapCall and Asterisk are two services that can track and reveal a private number. Call Trace is a service you can use to find out who is calling you as well by dialling *57 from a touch-tone phone, or 1157 from a rotary phone. A fee may be required to use this service. These services are legal, but some, like Trap Call have raised some legal and ethical issues recently. Check with the privacy laws of your state for information about these services. Some people criticise private number revealing services because victims of domestic abuse have obtained private numbers for personal safety reasons. Also, some states do not allow recording of calls. TrapCall provides an option that gives callers the chance to hang up after they are notified that the call may be recorded, and recommends that this service not be overridden because of state laws around recording calls.