What are Sullivan County Area Codes?
Area codes are the three-digit numbers that begin every telephone number in North America. They were originally introduced as part of the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) to help stratify subscribers into different numbering plan areas. Simply put, an area code helps to identify the telephone service region a caller falls into.
One area code currently covers the entire region of Sullivan County.
Area Code 423
Area code 423 is the NANP code that covers central Tennessee, north, and south of Knoxville. It was introduced in September 1995 as a split-off from area code 615. It was later split in 1999 to form NPA 865. NPA 423 covers two disconnected geographic areas in East Tennessee, both being separated by area code 865.
What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Sullivan County?
A 2018 National Center of Health Statistics survey estimated that 61.2% of the adult population in Tennessee used wireless-only telephony services. Only 3.7% of the demographic used just landlines. Among minors, 71.4% relied solely on wireless-only services, while landline-only users totaled 1.6% of the population. These numbers are indicators that cell phone usage has surpassed that of landlines in Sullivan County.
The primary phone carriers in the U.S. - AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint, all operate in Sullivan County, with four of them providing excellent coverage for county residents. AT&T has the best service coverage with 100%, and Verizon follows closely behind with 86% coverage. T-Mobile offers 62% coverage, and Sprint is the least with 60%. Many other Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) also run on these major phone carriers, with each providing residents with excellent alternatives to choose from. However, service availability may be spotty in certain areas such as populated places, rural areas, and spaces between tall buildings.
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is a technology that makes it possible for calls to be made using broadband Internet connections instead of traditional phone lines. VoIP services are popular in Sullivan County. Several companies offer highly competitive rates and packages to businesses and county residents alike. Compared to landlines and wireless telephone services, VoIP services offer users more affordable and flexible telephone services.
What are Sullivan County Phone Scams?
Sullivan County phone scams are phone calls that target the county’s residents with the intent of stealing their money, financial, or other personal information. Tools that perform reverse phone number lookup are adept at identifying such scammers. Common scams committed in Sullivan County include:
What are Sullivan County Law Enforcement Impersonation Scams?
In this scam, the scammer identifies as an employee of the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office or some other law enforcement agency. Usually, the scammer takes on a random name and identity to make the scheme more believable. The scammer posing as an official tells the target that they have a warrant for their arrest because they have missed jury duty. They tell the target that the only way to resolve the issue is to make payments to specific accounts. The scammer requests these payments through gift cards or wire bank transfers. Other times, they target the credit card details of the person they have called.
The Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office will never contact anyone requesting money to avoid incarceration. Residents who receive such calls should contact the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office at 423-279-7500 to report these incidents. Also, remember to never give out your sensitive personal or financial information to strangers requesting such over the phone. It is quite common to see scammers spoof the Caller ID of the Sheriff’s Office. Reverse cell phone lookup services can be used to identify spoofed Caller IDs and verify the actual identities of the callers.
What are Sullivan County Social Security Scams?
Here, the scammers contact residents claiming to be employees of the Social Security Administration (SSA). The scammers tell their targets that their social security numbers were compromised and request that they make payments to avoid being arrested or charged to court. Usually, the payments are requested through wire transfers, gift cards, or crypto. In other cases, they demand that their victims hand over their credit card and other bank details to them to resolve the issue. In most cases, these scammers spoof their Caller IDs to display the Caller IDs of the Social Security Administration. They try to keep most, if not all their transactions on the phone during the call to prevent their targets from verifying.
The SSA has cautioned that they never call residents to demand money or any financial information. If you receive such calls, hang up immediately, it most likely is a scam call. Victims should report to the Inspector General’s Office. A free reverse cell phone lookup service can help identify if such calls are actually from the SSA.
What are Sullivan County Bond Money Scams?
Sullivan County residents are warned to be on the lookout for phone scammers masquerading themselves as bondsmen. Usually, the callers identify themselves as officers. They tell their targets that a family member is in jail and needs them to send money for the bond to have them released. Targets of this scam are family members of newly jailed or released people. Some scammers even go as far as appearing at the homes of their targets to retrieve the said “bond money.”
Residents should never give out money, personal details, or other confidential information to anyone claiming to be associated with the Sheriff’s Office that is unverified. Reverse phone number lookup searches can help authenticate the Caller ID and respond to the question ‘who is this number registered to?’ The SCSO says bond corrections seldom happen, and even when they do, they are handled in person at the jail or through the court system. Targets should immediately hang up and contact the Sheriff’s Office to ask questions if they seem to be in doubt.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Robocalls are automated phone calls that deliver pre-recorded messages, usually through auto-dialers. Robocalls are popular with telemarketing companies and non-profit organizations. Robocall users enjoy the advantage of reaching a large number of persons with minimal cost, effort, and time. These same benefits have endeared phone scammers to robocalls.
Scammers use robocalls to disguise themselves as legitimate organizations to steal residents’ money and private data. Most times, they spoof their identities, masking behind the Caller IDs of different well-known businesses. Also, because it is a robotic operator on the other end of the line, phone scammers can easily phish for residents’ information anonymously. All the same, a reverse phone lookup free service can help you easily identify an incoming robocall.
Not all robocalls are scam calls, but a large number of them are. Some options to deal with illegal robocalls are:
- Hang up once you realize it is a robocall. Also, ignore messages asking you to take any further action, as doing so will only trigger more automated texts and calls.
- Register your number for free on the “National Do Not Call” registry. Phone numbers listed on the NDNC registry for 31 days or more are exempted from receiving robocalls. Any robocall received after this timeframe is most likely a scam call.
- Inquire from your phone carrier about the procedures for blocking numbers and use them.
- Use online services that offer phone number search free of charge, free reverse phone lookups, or phone number search to ascertain who called.
- File and submit complaints with the FTC online or call 1-(888)-382-1222.
The FTC also provides important consumer tips on blocking unwanted calls on any platform on its website.
How Can You Spot and Report Sullivan County Phone Scams?
Recently, scammers have become even more daring and sophisticated in their approach. Tools that carry out reverse phone searches help with suspicious phone number lookup to reveal the actual person on the other end of the call. Even so, awareness remains the most productive means of curbing the activities of phone scammers. Here is how you can identify scam calls:
- Scammers always pressure their targets through the use of force, threats, and fear. Some of their most common tactics include threats to arrest the targets, impose huge fees or fines on them, withdraw their licenses, or discontinue their services.
- The caller requests funds from their target and insists that it be made through channels other than the regular ones. Some of the most popular routes include bank wire transfers, gift cards, prepaid cards, bitcoin, and FedEx Cash. Usually, funds sent through these payment channels are hard to trace, hence the reason for their choice.
- Scammers will often propose investment deals that seem too good to be true. Usually, their offers would involve promises of huge returns within a very short period, and with little or no risk. Usually, the purpose of this is to get their targets to take action without considering the situations surrounding the offer.
- The caller tries to get their target to divulge sensitive personal or financial information online or on the phone. Legitimate businesses and organizations will never pressure or request that you to divulge such information.
The chances that at some point, you will be contacted by phone scammers are very high. However, some tools help with free phone number lookups by name, number, and address.
Several public organizations have been instituted to assist Sullivan County residents in dealing with the menace of scammers. County residents who have been victims of phone scams may contact any of these agencies to report or file their complaints:
Sullivan County Sheriff Department- The Sullivan County Sheriff's Department provides residents with information and updates on prevalent scams happening around them. County residents who have been victims of phone scammers may register their complaints by calling their 24-hour number at (423) 279-7500 or by reporting online on their website.
Tennessee Attorney General's Office, Division of Consumer Affairs- The Consumer Affairs Division of the Tennessee Attorney General's Office is dedicated to protecting and defending consumers and legitimate business enterprises in the state from fraudulent and illegal organizations and persons. The Division also promotes residents with Consumer Education on scams, schemes & swindles. Victims of scams may file reports to them by email or by calling the number 615-741-4737. They can also submit their complaints online.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC) - The FTC works to protect consumers from misleading and unfair business practices. The National Do Not Call Registry is one of its efforts in keeping to this vision. Telemarketing organizations are prohibited from contacting numbers listed on the DNCR. If you continue to receive robocalls after the first 31 days of registering on the registry, chances are they are most likely scam calls. The FTC also provides updates on prevalent scams in the U.S. This ensures that county residents are kept abreast and know what to do if contacted by scammers. Victims of scams may file complaints with the FTC or call 1-(888)-382-1222.
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) - The FCC protects county residents from fraudulent robocalls and Caller ID spoofing scams. Instructions on how residents may stop robocalls and avoid phone scams are available on their website.