How to block private callers from reaching your iPhone in 2 ways

You can block private calls on your iPhone with these two methods. Timur Emek / Getty

No, it’s not your imagination. There’s a virtual tsunami of robocalls sweeping American phones these days, with 26.3 billion unwanted calls in 2018 alone.

Since many of these calls arrive as private calls – with then Caller ID marked as “Unknown” – you can dramatically reduce the number of calls you get by blocking them.

Read more:
How to stop robocalls and other spam calls on iPhone

Unfortunately, Apple doesn’t give you an easy way to block Unknown, Private, or No Caller ID calls on your iPhone, but there are a few workarounds you can try.

Check out the products mentioned in this article:

iPhone Xs (From $US999 at Apple)

How to block private calls on an iPhone using Do Not Disturb Mode

This is the most effective way to limit calls from private and unknown numbers, but it’s not without its disadvantages.

You can turn on the iPhone’s Do Not Disturb mode, but configure it to allow calls from numbers in your contacts list to go through. All unknown calls will go to voicemail (which isn’t terrible, because most robocalls won’t leave a message), but so will any legitimate calls that aren’t already in your contacts list.

If you try this approach, you’ll want to keep an eye on your voicemail for important calls.

1. Start the Settings app and tap “Do Not Disturb.”

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You can specify exactly how your iPhone behaves when in Do Not Disturb mode from the Settings app. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

2. Tap “Allow Calls From.”

3. On the Allow Calls From page, tap “All Contacts.”

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Allow all of your contacts through in Do Not Disturb mode and then turn it on to keep telemarketers at bay. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

Now, you can enable Do Not Disturb mode (tap the switch at the top of the Do Not Disturb page, or open the Control Center from the top right or bottom of the screen and tap the crescent moon icon) and only people in your contacts list will ring through – all other numbers will go to voicemail.

How to block calls on an iPhone from specific private callers

You can’t block every call you get, but you can block specific ones – in fact, there’s a “Block this Caller” option built into the call log in the Phone app. Follow the instructions in the article “How to block a phone number on your iPhone” to learn how to do this.

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You can block specific private callers, but only after they have already called you once. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

Keep in mind that telemarketers use enormous phone banks to place calls. A single telemarketer might place calls from many different numbers, so this will have only a modest impact on the number of unwanted calls you get, at best.

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