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How To Hide Your Number From Someone's Caller ID

For privacy reasons you may want to prevent other people from gathering data on you (i.e. your name and phone number) when you contact a cell phone or to a landline equipped with Caller ID.

Other reasons for not wanting your number displayed could include personal or business concerns. Perhaps you are checking up on numbers your child has contacted, but you don't want to rile up your teenager with your natural parental concern. Such concern will doubtless be mistaken for "snooping" when friends of theirs recognize your number or see your name on their screen.

Or maybe you are conducting market research for your company and need to remain anonymous. Doing so would be much more difficult if you are contacting any other person from your unblocked business line.

Whatever the reason, you do have options when it comes to keeping your name and phone number from appearing:

  • Look into Per-Call and Per-Line Blocking. These are two effective services offered by most carriers that enable their customers to manage their privacy while contacting others via a telephone. Per-Call Blocking is also known as Selective Blocking. To use this feature the caller commonly dials *67 prior to keying in the desired number. This will normally prevent the person being called from seeing any information on their Caller ID unit. Per-Line Blocking, or Complete Blocking, is a more wide-ranging service in the same vein. You must request Per-Line Blocking directly from your carrier. Once in effect, this service will prevent your information from being displayed.
  • Keep your info private while on a cell by either dialing *67 or permanently by requesting a Line Block from your carrier. With the latter in place all calls outbound from your cell will not flash your information on a Caller ID device. The normal exceptions being when you dial an 800 number or 911.

You may also have heard of "spoofing" technology, which is a service or device to alter how your data is displayed when you place a call. Using such a system, you could designate a different or made up number to be displayed on a Caller ID screen. Although this should not be used all the time, this type of technology might be helpful in situations that require it.

While spoofing began as a legitimate tool employed by police and bail enforcement agents in sensitive situations, it has become abused by "crank callers" and used for other inappropriate purposes. Various legislation has been proposed to make spoofing technology illegal. So this type of technology will probably not be usable in the future. If you'd like to block your identity, the best option is using the *67 method, or by contacting your phone carrier and asking that your identity be permanently blocked. By doing this, you are able to effectively conceal your identity to anyone whom you wish to contact, and still do it in a legitimate, legal, and safe way.

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