By Bob Weaver

Perhaps one of the blessings of living in the backwoods of West Virginia is the serenity, which is interrupted several times a day by robocalls.

One day last week, we got nine, most of them using "spoofing," where the outfit highjacks the phone number of a person or place you know so you'll pick-up.

About 50% robocalls are legal, 50% are not.

Unfortunately, a number of Calhoun residents have become victims.

Washington politicians have chosen to ignore the illegal, often citing the expense of investigations and prosecution.

Washington, a few years ago, created a cumbersome and expensive "do not call" list, which has now mostly faded.

Robocalls have reached epidemic numbers. Why? Because they are very profitable, and refined scamming still works, mostly on older people.

Over 30 billion robocalls were made last year.

Aaron Foss, founder of Nomorobo, said “While some of these calls, like political ones, are legal, they are still super annoying. And there¬ís no way to stop those, even if you are on the Do Not Call List.”

The FTC received 4.5 million robocall complaints in 2017, up from 3.4 million in 2016. And this is only the tip of the iceberg, since most people bothered by robocalls never file a complaint.

So much personal information has been breached and is now available to phone bandits that they often have the person’s full name and address, account information, and possibly Social Security number when they call.

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