Halton Regional Police Service
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Harassing Telephone Calls

Nuisance, obscene or threatening telephone calls can run the gamut from harmless pranks to potentially harmful or dangerous threats.

The Halton Regional Police Service offers the following advice to recipients of such calls:

  • Say nothing to encourage a return call. Hang up if:
    • If the caller says nothing
    • At the first offensive word
    • If the caller does not immediately identify himself/herself
  • Should the caller persist:
    • Keep an accurate record of the calls and notify the police. At this point, investigative measures may be taken.
    • Consider purchasing an answering machine, Call Answer and/or Call Display feature
      • Answering machines can serve as screening devices for incoming calls while you are at home
    • Consider an unlisted number
      • Although difficult to maintain, unlisted numbers are often very effective ways to prevent nuisance calls

To minimize a woman's chance of being called at random by a nuisance caller:

  • List yourself in telephone directories without your marital status, using your initial rather than your first name
  • Obtain a pre-recorded outgoing answering machine message rather than recording your own personal message

Both measures prevent unwanted callers from knowing a woman lives alone.

Additional information pertaining to harrassing telephone calls is available at the front of your local telephone directory.

Many telephone service providers also offer Call Trace (*69) services from touch tone telephones that enable users to trace the last number to call them for a fee.