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Spam calls weren’t slowed down by COVID-19, in fact, they increased 18%

In the US, people received an average of 28 spam calls a month.

spam calls on a smartphone
Image: Unsplash

A recent report from TrueCaller revealed that the number of spam calls in 2020 increased by 18% even though the world is dealing with a pandemic. TrueCaller, a company known for its caller ID app, is responsible for the report that explains the state of spam calls in 2020 worldwide. 

According to their data, users received 31.3 billion spam calls during a period from January and October. For comparison, last year, spam callers made 26 billion calls during that same period, whereas in 2018, users worldwide received just 17.7 billion spam calls. 

As it turns out, there are fewer spammer calls in countries that traditionally lead the charts in this category, whereas there are more spam calls in countries that were traditionally on the lower part of those same charts. 

Despite efforts from telecom regulators, smartphone makers, carriers, and mobile OS makers, spam calls are getting a lot of traction in developed countries such as the USA. TrueCaller estimates that the average American, on average, received 28 spam calls every month during 2020. That’s a significant increase considering that last year, American users received 18 calls per month.

Then there is Brazil, by far the most affected country in the world by spam calls. In Brazil, on average, users receive almost 50 spam calls per month. That a significant step up from what was already the huge 45 figure in 2019.

India once topped the list of worst nations affected by spam calls, but in 2020 its position plunged to ninth place. This year, users in India, on average, received 16 spam calls monthly. That a big step down compared to last year when users received around 25 calls per month.

The report also noted several other trends:

  • The most affected countries in Asia were Russia, Vietnam, India, and Indonesia.
  • Aside from the annoyance part, spam calls were used to scam people out of their money.
  • In 2019, the list of most affected countries by spam calls was dominated by South American countries. That’s not the case as this year, countries such as Colombia, Peru, and Chile have experienced decreased spam calls. 
  • In 2020, the list of countries most affected by spam callers includes countries from within Europe. The countries that make the cut are the UK, Hungary, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Greece, Romania, Poland, and Ukraine. 
  • The number of spam calls coming from Europe increased significantly. Most of the spam calls come from countries such as Hungary, Germany, and Belgium.

Overall, it’s a bit surprising that spam calls were on the rise this year, but at the same time, it’s possible that these spam callers wanted to use these unprecedented times to target people in hopes that people were more willing to answer phone calls from unknown numbers.

What do you think? Have you noticed an increase in spam calls this year? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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