Tag Archives: Online Phone Number

What is VoIP?

VoIP connecting to devices

Voice Over Internet Protocol AKA VoIP, is a method by which voice and multimedia sessions take place over the Internet rather than through a traditional phone service. Users also refer to VoIP as Internet telephony, broadband telephony, or broadband phone service, a service that is not new, but has been gaining popularity. Unlike plain old telephone service (POTS), VoIP does not need a service plan or a static telephone number. Anyone can use the system for free, from anywhere in the world.

Pros and Cons of VoIP

There are several pros and cons to using a VoIP phone number. The pros include being able to choose your own phone number, with any area code. People use VoIP for many reasons. The pros can be positive or negative in that the caller’s identity is usually blocked or unavailable. Users may opt to be anonymous for various reasons including personal or professional privacy or for developing targeted marketing services. Cons are that some users choose to hide their identity to protect themselves when they are involved in illegal activity. People use VoIP even though it can only be used with an internet connection or a phone’s mobile hot spot.

Hidden Identity

VoIP services only know what information you put in when you sign up, so it can be anonymous. The service asks for an email account, which can also be anonymous, so tracing the number may be almost impossible. Scammers use the system because it gives them cover from the police and prosecution reducing the risk of being caught.

Locating the Caller

You can trace a phone number by doing a reverse phone number search to find if the number is traditional or Internet-based. You may be able to locate an IP address for the VoIP number but unless you are highly tech savvy, chances are you won’t be able to uncover who is using the number. However, law enforcement has tools which may be able to locate the origin of the calls.

Google Voice is a popular VoIP service. While the service many be anonymous, Google collects and shares information with third parties that may help to track the caller. Google does not have a directory of its VoIP numbers, and such efforts would be pointless since the numbers can and do change all the time. You should use the following tips to track the number.

  1. Phone directories. You can use a reverse phone search to find the number, even if it’s a VoIP number. If you think the number is fake, you can check online phone directories to see if it has been reported.
  2. You can search Facebook to see if the person has linked the number to their social media profile.

Protecting Yourself

If you receive a call from a VoIP phone number, treat it as if it is fake. Never give out personal information to a stranger. You should report any suspicious activity to the police immediately.