What are Caddo Parish Area Codes?
Area codes are three-digit numbers that usually precede telephone numbers in the North American region. An area code makes it possible for an individual to trace or identify the origin of a particular call, as every phone number carries an area code. Reverse phone lookup tools come in handy when looking to conduct area code lookups. The North American Numbering Plan (NANP) splits territories into Numbering Plan Areas (NPA) and creates an area code map for each territory, making sure that each one has at least one area code.
Area Code 318
Area code 318 is the telephone area code in the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) that covers Central and Northern Louisiana. This area code was created in 1957 as a split from Louisiana's original area code 504. The cities it covers in Caddo County include the Cities of Shreveport, Calhoun, Joyce, Saint Maurice, and Bossier City.
Area Code 504
Area code 504 was created in 1947. It was one of the first area codes that covered the entire State of Louisiana. The area code was split in 1957, 1998, and 2001. Presently, its coverage extends to the Cities of Chalmette, Harahan, Woodmere, etc.
What Are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Caddo Parish?
Caddo Parish has four major active phone carriers an AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and Verizon. Considering these four major phone carriers, T-Mobile has the best coverage with 94%. The second-best coverage is AT&T with 90%, followed by Sprint with 72%. Verizon has the least coverage with 68%. Despite the general network quality of these phone carriers, the network quality in densely populated areas may be low.
Based on the 2018 National Center of Health Statistics survey, an estimate of 57.6% of the Louisiana adult population above age 18 used only wireless telephones. In contrast, 4.2% of Louisiana adults used only landlines, while 12% used both landlines and wireless telephones. On the flip side, for minors under age 18 in Louisiana, 67.8% used only wireless telephone services, while 2.7% used only landlines. Also, only 7.1% used both landlines and wireless telephones. Judging from this survey, it is obvious that both adults and minors in Louisiana prefer to use wireless telephones instead of landlines.
Caddo Parish residents and businesses are steadily adopting VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) for telephony services. This is as a result of its mobility, the option to change area codes, and affordability. VoIP uses internet connections for the transmission of multimedia and voice communications. Even at that, calls using VoIP still maintain the same quality as traditional telephony services. Some amazing features offered by VoIP are unlimited calling, call forwarding, call blocking, Caller ID, 24-hour customer assistance, etc.
What Are Caddo Parish Phone Scams?
Caddo Parish phone scams involve diverse fraudulent acts perpetrated to deceive, exploit and defraud residents. The intent of most of these phone scams is to get their targets to divulge their personal and financial information to steal, extort or commit identity theft. These scammers usually make similar promises, ask for payment in certain ways and even go as far as issuing threats. Phone scammers have taken advantage of technological advancements in the telephony system. They sometimes make use of robocalls and Caller ID spoofing. In Caller ID spoofing, they block their Caller IDs and take on the identities of legitimate organizations for fraudulent purposes.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) helps combat phone scams by educating residents on how to deal with phone scams. They advise residents not to always trust their Caller ID information but to use call blocking apps and features. The FTC also encourages residents to hang up the call once they suspect scams. Reverse phone look up tools are also necessary tools in unveiling the identity of scam callers.
Common scams perpetrated in Caddo Parish include:
What are IRS Scams?
IRS scams are scams that involve fraudsters impersonating legitimate Internal Revenue Service (IRS) agents. These fraudsters randomly contact residents to demand payment for fees, fines, or taxes. They usually threaten residents that refuse to pay with arrest, license revocation, or deportation. In most cases, the fraudsters demand payments via untraceable means like wire transfers, prepaid debit cards, iTunes, bitcoins, or gift cards. It is important to understand that the IRS never calls out of the blue to demand immediate payment. The IRS enlightens residents on the red flags of IRS scams and how to know when it is the IRS calling.
To report IRS scams, residents can contact the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) by calling 1-800-366-4484. IRS scams can also be reported online. In addition, residents can identify fraudsters by conducting suspicious phone number lookups with reverse phone lookup tools.
What are Grandparent Scams?
Grandparent scams target older residents, especially the ones with grandchildren. Here, the caller poses to be the target’s grandchild and with a sense of urgency, demands financial assistance. Most times, this sort of urgency is tied to the “grandchild” being in trouble of some sort- arrest, robbery, accident, etc. The scammer provides just enough details concerning the plight with certain family particulars to make the scheme believable. As it is the norm with these scammers, payment is demanded through prepaid cards, gift cards, or wire transfers. Note that the fact that a number looks familiar does not make it legitimate. With the use of Caller ID spoofing, scammers can conceal their Caller ID and adopt someone else’s. Avoid giving out your personal or financial information and never allow yourself to be rushed into making payment of any sort. A free reverse phone number lookup service can help answer the question “who called me” to identify the source of a call.
What are Social Security Administration Scams?
Social Security Administration scams are quite common in Caddo Parish. They involve scammers taking on the identities of the Social Security officers and contacting residents with threats to suspend their accounts if they do not make immediate payment. They mostly request payment via prepaid debit cards, gift cards, wire transfers, or even cash drop-offs. Some of these scammers even go as far as threatening to take legal action or cause the residents’ arrest. The scammers sometimes use Caller ID spoofing. Here, they take on the identities of actual Social Security Administration officers to deceive residents to get their personal information or money.
The Social Security Administration creates scam awareness and advises residents to take precautions as they would never put a call through to ask for personal information. If a call is questionable, residents are advised to hang up and report such calls to the Social Security Administration online. Complaints can also be made to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
What are Caddo Parish Sheriff Department Scams?
Caddo Parish Sheriff Department scams involve where scammers impersonating the Caddo Parish Sheriff Department, Police Department, and other law enforcement agencies generally. This is done to demand payment from the victims, either via gift cards or even over the phone to avoid being arrested or for the satisfaction of fines. These scammers instill fear in victims and threaten arrest for non-compliance. Residents should be wary of Caller ID spoofing as this is how scammers impersonate law enforcement agencies.
The Caddo Parish Sheriff explained that no law enforcement officer will request personal information over the phone or ask for payment. In the case of a warrant, the individual will be served according to the court process at their residence. Therefore, once such calls are received, residents are advised not to give out personal information or make payments but instead hang up and report to the Caddo Sheriff’s office on +1 318-675-2170.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Robocalls are pre-recorded phone calls that are sent to several persons using computerized autodialers. These robocalls are mostly affiliated with telemarketing telephone campaigns and political parties. Some robocalls have the option of transferring recipients to live agents. However, it is important to note that robocalls are meant to be strictly informational and can only be sent if the targeted recipients give prior consent. Robocalls can be either legal or illegal, depending on their purpose or intent. Below are some legitimate robocalls:
- Robocalls from political parties/ political calls
- Robocalls for the dissemination of vital information
- Robocalls for the collection of debts
- Robocalls from a legitimate charitable organization
- Robocalls from healthcare workers
Robocalls are affordable and can be easily accessed from anywhere in the world. Hence, scammers take advantage of its ease of access to defraud residents and steal their personal and financial information. Spam calls are unsolicited calls, placed without prior consent. These calls deliver messages that are of no relevance in bulk, usually for advertising purposes.
To avoid spam calls and robocalls, residents are advised to:
- Register their phone numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry. The Federal Trade Commission makes it clear that this does not entirely stop the calls from coming in but it makes it easy to identify scam calls. Louisiana also has a Do Not Call Program where residents can add their phone numbers to reduces the number of unsolicited calls they receive.
- Hang up the call as soon as they discover that they have picked a robocall. Also, if prompted to press numbers to stop receiving such robocalls, they are required to ignore them, because following such prompts will only lead to more unwanted robocalls.
- Avoid giving out personal or financial information such as Social Security numbers, passwords, account numbers, etc
- Use websites or applications that perform reverse phone lookups to spot and block spam calls.
- File complaints using the FTC’s online complaint assistance or call 1-888-382-1222.
- File complaints to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on the Consumer Complaint Center.
How to Spot and Report Caddo Parish Phone Scams?
Phone scams are on the increase with scammers adopting different methods all in a bid to defraud unsuspecting citizens. Hence, parish residents have to take precautions when receiving phone calls so as not to fall for these scams. It is clear that with Caller ID spoofing, numbers that have the semblance of those belonging to legitimate organizations can not always be trusted. Therefore, it is necessary to look out for red flags of scam calls. These include:
- Calls that request financial and personal information: When such calls are received, recipients are advised to hang up immediately and not divulge such information.
- Calls issuing threats for non-payment of debts: Most entities usually pre-inform debtors of debts owed. They rarely demand immediate payment over the phone.
- Calls from unknown phone numbers - Use reverse phone lookup services to determine the identity of the caller and block the phone number if the need arises.
- Calls that request payment via gift cards, prepaid cards, iTunes, or with money transfer apps - No legitimate organization will ask for payment via any of those means.
- Calls informing you of your selection or prize won and requesting that you pay processing fees - Hang up such calls immediately, block such phone numbers, and do not make payment of any sort.
- Calls with a sense of urgency - Hang up immediately as you are prone to making mistakes under pressure. Note that no legitimate organization will call with a sense of urgency for whatever reason.
Parish residents can report phone scams to these government agencies:
Caddo Parish Sheriff's Department - Call the Sheriff’s Office on +1 318-675-2170, to report scams or report in-person by visiting:
Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Department:
501 Texas Street, Shreveport,
LA 71101, United States.
Shreveport Police Department - Contact the department on (318) 673-7300 or in person by visiting:
505, Travis Street, Shreveport,
LA 71101, United States.
Louisiana Attorney General Consumer Protection Division - Residents can file complaints online or call 225-326-6465 to report scams.
Federal Trade Commission - Residents can report phone scams through the online consumer complaint assistant. Residents can as well register on the FTC’s National Do Not Call Registry to restrict unwanted calls.