Caller ID Spoofing is a technique used by scammers to falsify the caller identification information displayed on the recipient's phone or other communication devices. It allows the caller to disguise their real identity and make the call appear to be coming from a different number or a different name.
In simple terms, Caller ID Spoofing allows a person overseas to manipulate the information transmitted to the receiver's device, so it appears that the call is coming from a legitimate and trustworthy source, such as a bank, government agency, or a trusted individual, when in reality, it's a fraudulent attempt to deceive or scam the recipient. If the recipient doesn't answer, they will see a missed call from the falsified calling number.
You may receive calls from regular people in Australia that claim to be returning a call you made to them. They have a missed call on their phone, and although you didn't make the call, it still appeared to come from your phone number. This is called Caller ID Spoofing, which is when some unauthorised person or organisation uses your phone number when making calls from overseas. Caller ID Spoofing is frustrating - but don't take it out on the person returning 'your call'
The person calling you back may not believe you, but it's not their fault. Just let them know you didn't make the call, and hang up.
Since carriers are interconnected, and calls will tend to take the shortest path, a phone call originating from overseas to a Telstra mobile may not transit our network, nor our upstream carrier's network. Unfortunately, as the original call doesn't transit our network, there is no information available to us, nor a way to block it. You can ask the person returning your call to make a complaint to their phone provider, as that information may help that provider determine how the rogue call entered their network, and they can take action to block it.
In practice, most scammers and call centres will move on after a while, targeting a new set of Caller IDs.
If you receive a large volume of calls, you may need to route your number to an IVR or voicemail advising callers. See the ID Care fact sheet below for suggestions.
The Telco Industry is working on ways to prevent unsolicited nuisance and scam calls from being made into Australia, including the use of Caller ID blocking and Caller ID authentication.