U.S. Consumers Received Just Under 4.3 Billion Robocalls in January, According to YouMail Robocall Index
Monthly Volume Is Down 5.2% Year Over Year, As Robocalls Trend Down Over Time
IRVINE, Calif., Feb. 8, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. consumers received just under 4.3 billion robocalls in January. While this figure represents a 13.4% increase over December's multi-year low of approximately 3.8 billion robocalls, it also represents a 5.2% decline from 4.5 billion robocalls in January 2023, and it represents a 6.8% decline from 2023's average of nearly 4.6 billion robocalls/month.
January averaged 137.9 million robocalls/day and 1,596 robocalls/second, a full 13% higher than December's average of 121.6 million robocalls/day and 1,407 robocalls/second. However, other than December, this is the lowest daily average since December 2022.
"We're starting to see a trend of overall lower robocall volumes," said YouMail CEO Alex Quilici. "There is always some month-to-month volatility, but looking at the bigger picture, the total volumes of robocalls feels like it's finally starting to come down."
These latest figures are provided by YouMail, a totally free robocall blocking app and call protection service for mobile phones. The figures are determined by extrapolating from the robocall traffic attempting to get through to YouMail's millions of active users.
Unwanted Robocalls, Especially Scam Calls, Are Declining
Despite the robocall volume going up in January versus December, the total number of unwanted telemarketing and scam calls remained well under 2 billion robocalls/month, and stayed relatively steady at 42%.
In addition, while scam calls were up slightly for the month, the long-term trend shows a very material reduction in scam calls over the past few years. Scam calls appear to be down 80% from their peak volume roughly three years ago. This decline is likely because of a mix of law enforcement efforts and Stir/Shaken rules that make it harder to spoof numbers, and scammers moving from large-scale robocall campaigns to campaigns that are much more targeted, making them harder to detect and prevent.
January 2024's Most Interesting Robocalling Campaigns
Two robocall campaigns were of particular interest in January. One campaign used an AI-generated voice clone of President Biden to place robocalls telling voters not to vote in the New Hampshire Democratic Primary:
This coming Tuesday is the New Hampshire Presidential Preference Primary. Republicans have been trying to push nonpartisan and Democratic voters to participate in their primary. What a bunch of malarky. We know the value of voting Democratic when our votes count. It's important that you save your vote for the November election. We'll need your help in electing Democrats up and down the ticket. Voting this Tuesday only enables the Republicans in their quest to elect Donald Trump again. Your vote makes a difference in November, not this Tuesday. If you would like to be removed from future calls, please press two now. Call 603-345-7057 to be removed from future calls.
The overall volume appears to be small, in the tens of thousands of calls, but the impact of these calls looms large, given their potential to affect an election, and the possibility of these campaigns being executed at a much larger scale.
The other campaign of interest for January was a largescale telemarketing campaign that appears to be from One Street Financial and consists of robocalls like this one related to loans for consolidating debt:
This is Sarah from One Street Financial. I'm calling to follow up on the letter we mailed you. You've been pre-selected for our economic release personal loan because of your current financial situation. This loan is ideal for consolidating high interest credit card and personal loan debt into one easy payment. We manage this offer because you or someone in your household qualifies for this program. Remember this offer and the program are about to expire at the end of 2023. Please call me back at 833-431-2961 to discuss how this can work for you. Your reference code is going to be PR 72383. I'm here to help and assist.
The overall volume appears to be in the tens of millions of calls, and some consumers reported that they never gave consent for these calls and they are unwanted. However, these calls come from a limited set of toll-free numbers, making it relatively easy to block for both consumers and for call-blocking apps like YouMail.
The Source of This Data
These data points are provided by YouMail, a free call protection app for mobile phones. YouMail won the American Business Awards' Gold Stevie Award for Technical Innovation of the Year, and the YouMail app was named the nation's best robocall-blocking solution in a competition organized by Geoffrey Fowler of the Washington Post.
YouMail blocks unwanted robocallers by making sure the user's phone doesn't ring, and then plays an out-of-service message that leads them to think they dialed an invalid number. YouMail identifies problematic numbers and robocalls using a combination of its recently patented audio fingerprinting technology, call patterns, and consumer feedback.
YouMail provides the YouMail Robocall Index to estimate robocall volume across the country and for specific area codes every month. This estimate is formed by extrapolating from the behavior of the billions of calls YouMail has handled for its users, and these statistics are regularly cited by the FCC as a definitive source for national data trends.
For a full ranking of cities, states and area codes, as well as details on the behavior of robocallers in each area code, please see http://robocallindex.com. To listen to actual voice messages left by robocallers, please visit the YouMail Directory. To join the YouMail Robocall Index mailing list, please write to [email protected].
About YouMail, Inc.
YouMail protects consumers, enterprises, and carriers from harmful phone calls. YouMail provides US and UK consumers app-based call protection services through the YouMail, Another Number, and HulloMail apps. These solutions answer over a billion live calls per year across well over 10 million registered users, powering America's most robust telephone sensor network in identifying and providing zero-hour protection against illegal calling campaigns and cyberattacks. YouMail Protective Services leverages this sensor network to protect consumer-facing enterprises by detecting and helping shut down imposter traffic that can lead to financial or brand damage, as well as to protect carriers with robocall mitigation services that detect and help stop bad traffic originating, traversing, or terminating on their networks. This sensor network is also used to provide the YouMail Robocall Index™ is the nation's definitive source on telephone network activity and attacks. YouMail, Inc. is privately funded and based in Irvine, California.
Gabriella Troiani for YouMail
View original content to download multimedia:https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/us-consumers-received-just-under-4-3-billion-robocalls-in-january-according-to-youmail-robocall-index-302057113.html
SOURCE YouMail, Inc.