Stop phone scammers in their tracks with FONES, an anti-robocalling solution

FONES Software Anti-Scam
First Orion
There’s nothing more annoying than unsolicited phone calls from companies, nonprofits, and folks you’ve never heard of. But thanks to the ubiquity of robocalling, or tech that dials numbers automatically, they’re an increasingly common occurrence. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission received 5.2 million complaints about robocalls in 2016, a 30 percent increase from the same period a year earlier. But Little Rock, Arkansas-based First Orion, an enterprise company that provides data and phone call solutions to mobile carriers, has a fix for this growing problem: First Orion Network Enterprise Solutions (FONES).

That’s a mouthful, but FONES, at its core, makes it easier for carriers to protect subscribers from malicious callers. On the consumer side of the equation, it lets the subscribers of those carriers block any number from any device.

FONES filters numbers intelligently by tapping technologies like anonymous aggregation and network traffic analysis. And it analyzes billions of events in real time.

“This year, consumers will unnecessarily receive over 9 billion calls from known scammers and another 50 billion nuisance calls,” Jeff Stalnaker, president of First Orion, said. “Carriers can now prevent these unwanted calls from ever reaching their customers. FONES provides the foundation for a comprehensive solution for the protection that consumers deserve, with flexibility to meet carrier requirements and the ability to engage with First Orion in an efficient and easy way.”

The debut of FONES come at a time when fraudulent calls are on the rise. According to the FTC, robocalls cost phone customers $350 million annually. In response, the federal government has imposed more than $1.2 billion in fines on telemarketers. The Federal Communications Commission authorized telecommunications companies to block fraud and spam calls last year, and in 2013 hosted a contest to encourage private industry to come up with ways to stop robocalls.

Telecoms have started to do their part, too. Time Warner Cable makes it easy for its customers to sign up for Nomorobo, a service that works on internet-based phone lines to block robocalls. In September, Sprint expanded a partnership with Cequint to develop “enhanced caller ID solutions” that would be used to prevent spam calls from reaching customers. And in August, the four major carriers in the United States joined forces with Apple, Comcast, Ericsson, Google, Microsoft, Nokia, Qualcomm, Samsung, and others to establish a “robocall strike force.”

Mobile

Rekindled yet again, Nokia’s next-gen phones offer more than just nostalgia

HMD Global, a startup that designs and builds Nokia Android smartphones, wants to put the Nokia brand name back “where it belongs.” It helps that it’s made up of ex-Nokia employees. We go behind the scenes to see how HMD formed.
Product Review

Gate’s Smart Lock is locked and loaded but ultimately lacks important basics

In a world of video cameras and doorbells comes the Gate Smart Lock, a lock with a video camera embedded. It’s a great idea, but lacks some crucial functionality to make it a top-notch product.
Gaming

Among hundreds of choices, these are the best 25 SNES games of all time

The Super Nintendo Entertainment System might be the greatest game console ever made, but what are the best titles for the system? Here are our picks for the best SNES games.
Mobile

AT&T to stop selling location data to third parties after explosive report

After a report from Motherboard highlighted that carriers like AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint were selling location information to third parties and sometimes ended up in the wrong hands, carriers have announced they will end location selling…
Home Theater

Klipsch’s new Reference home theater system does hi-fi surround without wires

At CES 2019, Klipsch showed off its fantastic new Reference Wireless speaker system, a wireless surround sound setup that uses a re-emerging wireless technology called WiSA for hi-fi surround sound without the need for speaker wires.
Computing

Our favorite Windows apps will help you get the most out of your new PC

Not sure what apps you should be downloading for your newfangled Windows device? Here are the best Windows apps, whether you need something to speed up your machine or access your Netflix queue. Check out our categories and favorite picks.
Mobile

Samsung rumored to mark 10 years of the Galaxy S line with a 5G model

Samsung is rumored to launch a 5G version of the Galaxy S10, called the Galaxy S10 X. The phone may be larger than the standard Galaxy S10 devices, and feature a very impressive specification sheet.
Mobile

The most expensive Galaxy S10 could be the priciest Galaxy phone we've seen

Not long now; with 2019 underway, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is almost here. Before it arrives, here's absolutely everything you need to know about all three of Samsung's next flagships.
Computing

Yes, Android apps can run on your PC, and it's easier than you think

Wish you knew how to run Android apps in Windows? It's easier than you might think and there are a number of different ways to do it. In this guide, we break down the steps so you can follow along with ease.
Mobile

Unleash your inner artist with the best drawing apps for the iPad Pro

The best drawing apps for the iPad Pro turn Apple's robust tablet into a canvas worthy of a true artist. Here are 20 of our current favorites, whether you're looking to keep things simple or take your art to the next level.
Android

Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019: Complete Coverage

There's no bigger show for mobile tech geeks than Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain: where flagship phones are born and intriguing new wearables shine. And this year, where foldable phones and 5G are likely to dominate the news. For…
Mobile

C you soon? Rumors swirl of a USB-C port on 2019 iPhones

While it's not been long since the last iPhones launched, rumors for the next iPhone are already surfacing. Apple's 2019 flagship could include a variety of upgrades ranging from a new design to enhanced features.
Emerging Tech

CES 2019 recap: All the trends, products, and gadgets you missed

CES 2019 didn’t just give us a taste of the future, it offered a five-course meal. From 8K and Micro LED televisions to smart toilets, the show delivered with all the amazing gadgetry you could ask for. Here’s a look at all the big…
Mobile

Biometric phone unlocks can’t be forced by feds, says U.S. judge

Fingerprint and face unlocks used to not be protected by the Fifth Amendment, but that may soon change. A judge in California has ruled biometric unlocking methods of all kinds are protected in the same way as passcodes.