What are Pueblo County Area Codes?
The single area code serving Pueblo County is area code 719. An area code is a three-digit numeric designation for a numbering plan area (NPA). At the creation of the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) in 1947, the United State was divided with NPAs, each with its own unique area code. Area codes made routing long-distance calls more efficient. The NANP unified the conflicting telephone exchange systems in place prior to 1947. In a 10-digit North American phone number, the area code is easily recognized as the first three digits.
Area Code 719
Area code 719 serves the entirety of Pueblo County as well as some surrounding counties. It was created on March 5, 1988 in a split plan that shrank the NPA covered by area code 303. While residents currently served by this area code still use seven-digit dialing, the NPA is slated to transition to 10-digit dialing on October 24, 2021. This is to avoid conflict as area code 719 shares possible telephone numbers with central office code 988, the dialing code for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Communities in Pueblo County served by area code 719 include the City of Pueblo, the towns of Boone and Rye, and the following census-designated places: Avondale, Colorado City, and Salt Creek.
What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Pueblo County?
Most of the residents of Pueblo County and Colorado have shifted away from landline phones and fully adopted wireless phones for telecommunication. The 2018 wireless substitution survey conducted by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics supports this conclusion. The results of that survey show that 61.4% of adult Coloradoans use wireless phone services exclusively while only 3% of them still relied exclusively on landline phones. Among minors in the state, 67.9% were wireless-only phone users while a very tiny fraction (0.6%) still used landline phones only for telecommunication.
Residents of Pueblo County can sign up for phone plans offered by the major carriers as well as smaller MVNOs. Verizon has the widest wireless network in Colorado with 81.7% coverage while AT&T is a close second with 79.7% coverage of the state. T-Mobile’s network is only available 63.7% of Colorado and Sprint covers just 39.6% of its communities. MVNOs or Mobile Virtual Network Operators are regional carriers that resell network services purchased in bulk from these big carriers. They rebundle these services into phone plans with benefits tailored to appeal to subscribers in the areas they serve. Usually, signing up for a cell phone plan with an MVNO costs less than plans offered by major carriers.
VoIP operators also offer phone services in Pueblo County. VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol is a networking technology that enables communication over the web. It sends voice and video signals as data packets. VoIP phone services require broadband internet access. Residents that already have fast internet access at home or work find VoIP phone plans very affordable. VoIP phone services also cost less for long-distance calls and teleconferencing.
What are Pueblo County Phone Scams?
These are telephone frauds meant to defraud residents of Pueblo County. Telephone frauds are scams perpetrated using phone tools and services such as calls and text messaging. Scammers can also use sophisticated phone tools such as phishing, caller ID spoofing, and robocalls. In addition to deceptively taking money from their victims, scammers may also steal confidential identity and financial information such as social security numbers and credit card details.
Pueblo County residents are not without ready tools to fight and avoid phone scams. They can quickly identify scammers with reverse phone number lookup and avoid scammers with call blocking. Besides using these helpful tools, residents should also keep themselves informed of emerging phone scam trends in the communities. The Colorado Attorney General’s Office has a dedicated Fraud Center that publishes useful resources for educating the public about scam trends in the state. These indicate that the most common phone scams in Colorado are debt collection scams, social security scams, lottery/sweepstakes scams, and tech support scams.
What are Pueblo County Debt Collection Scams?
These scams exploit the grey areas around regulations for debt collection. Fraudsters running these scams target debtors and pose as creditors asking for immediate debt payments. They threaten their targets with immediate arrest if they do not pay outstanding debts immediately. Such debts range from overdue loans to unpaid utility bills. Debt collection scammers often ask for repayment by prepaid debit cards, gift cards, and wire transfer.
If contacted by a stranger threatening to arrest and throw you in jail over an outstanding debt, do not be pressured into sending them any money. First, confirm the identity of the caller. Use a free reverse phone lookup to determine whether the caller truly represents the debt collection agency, utility company, the IRS, or law enforcement agency they claim to represent. Contact the organization you are owing directly to ask them about such calls.
What are Pueblo County Social Security Scams?
These scams involve fraudsters impersonating employees of the Social Security Administration (SSA) or law enforcement agents. A social security scam may involve a scammer calling their target to inform them of bogus problems with their Social Security Number (SSN). They may claim their SSN was used by identity thieves, hackers, or even terrorists. After scaring the victim with their tall tale, the scammer asks that they call out their SSN to confirm their identity.
Pueblo County residents should know not to give their SSNs to anyone over the phone. The SSA, FBI, and other federal/state authorities do not call residents to confirm their SSNs or discuss ongoing cases related to identity theft. Run a suspicious phone number lookup to confirm that the number used for such a call is not registered to the SSA or any law enforcement agency.
What are Pueblo County Lottery/Sweepstakes Scams?
In these scams, fraudsters call to congratulate unsuspecting residents and tell them they have won sweepstakes or lotteries. In most cases, these are not lotteries/sweepstakes that they victims entered in. In their excitement, victims often fail to recognize how absurd these claims sound. A lottery scammer asks their victim to pay some money before receiving their winnings. They claim this is to cover taxes or some other processing fee.
Colorado’s Attorney General’s Office warns residents not to get taken by strangers claiming their won lotteries, especially foreign lotteries. A quick phone number lookup search can show that such calls came from numbers not associated with lottery/sweepstakes companies but those flagged for phone scams. It is illegal for anyone to ask the winner of a lottery, sweepstakes, or other kinds of free gifts to pay some money before receiving their prize.
What are Pueblo County Tech Support Scams?
These may start with phone calls or pop-up messages on targets’ computers informing them that their machines are infected with viruses or need tune-up to run faster. Legitimate tech support representatives do not call out of the blue to offer support. Fraudsters running these cons pretend to represent reputable tech companies, usually the computer brands and companies that make operating system software. They ask their victims for remote access to their computers or direct them to download malicious files from dubious websites and links.
A tech support scam may stick the victim with a huge bill for unneeded repairs and internet security software. They may also steal passwords and other confidential information from the victim’s computer. In some cases, scammers install ransomware when given remote access and then lock victims out of their computers until they pay whatever is demanded.
Do not give remote access to your computer or phone to a stranger calling to offer unrequested tech support. Check the identity of the caller by submitting their phone number for a suspicious phone number lookup. If you have already given a stranger remote access to your computer, take it to the local repair shop to have it scanned and thoroughly checked.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Robocalls and spam calls are unwanted phone scams usually directed to a lot of phone users. A robocall is a phone call placed by an auto-dialer delivering a recorded message to the call recipient. Robocalls are useful communication tools for telemarketers, political campaigns, and organizations sending out public service announcements. They are cost-effective ways of reaching a lot of people quickly. Scammers take advantage of the low cost and ease of deploying robocalls to find more targets for their cons.
A spam call is also an unsolicited phone call usually sent out in bulk to many phone users. While robocalls feature pre-recorded messages read in machine voice, spam calls usually have actual persons at the other end reading the same prepared script to a long list of phone users they are dialing.
With millions of such unwanted calls sent to residents of Pueblo County every year, robocalls and spam calls are quite the scourge of phone users. To reduce the number of these calls ringing your phone, consider the following actions:
- Let calls from strangers and unknown numbers go to voicemail where you can review them to see which calls need to be returned
- Hang up on a robocall or spam call as soon as you realize what it is
- Disregard instructions given during robocalls and spam calls about removing your number from their call lists. Robocallers and dishonest telemarketers use these prompts to confirm active lines and sell these to scammers and spammers
- Report illegal robocalls and spam calls to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). To gather more information for your report, use phone number lookup to identify repeat robocallers and spam callers
- Block calls from unknown numbers using the call-filtering feature of your phone. Carriers also offer call blocking on certain phone plans. There are also third-party call blocking apps that rely on up-to-date user-generated blacklists of flagged numbers used for spam calls, robocalls, and scam calls
- Join the National Do Not Call Registry and the Colorado No-Call List by registering your phone numbers. All robocalls and spam calls received after 31 days of joining these registries are most likely scammers and deceitful telemarketers
How to Spot and Report Pueblo County Phone Scams
Call blocking and reverse phone number lookup are even more effective at preventing phone scams if residents stay wary when talking to strangers on the phone. Anyone can be a victim of a phone scam. Therefore, it helps to know what to look for when considering whether an unknown caller is a scammer or not. While there are many scam tactics, they have certain common threads. Pueblo County residents should look out for the following signs of phone scams:
- Use of threats to force compliance
- Request for official payments by cash, wire transfer, gift cards, prepaid cards, cryptocurrency, and mobile payment services such as Venmo
- Use of high pressure tactics to force immediate commitment. Such tactics include claiming their offers are only available for a limited time and offering steep discounts
- Request for confidential information the caller should already have if they are indeed who they say they are
- Communicating in bad English or with foreign accents. Most scammers live outside the US in countries where English is a second language
Residents that suspect they are being targeted by scammers should report them immediately. Law enforcement and consumer protection agencies use such reports to determine scam trends, find patterns, and identify and locate fraudsters. Pueblo County residents can report successful and failed scam attempts to the following agencies:
- The Colorado Attorney General’s Office - this office protects consumers in the state against persons and organizations seeking to scam them. Residents of Pueblo County can file scam complaints online
- The Colorado No-Call Program - this is an initiative to reduce the number of robocalls and other unsolicited calls received by residents of the state. Residents can submit complaints about unwanted calls online
- The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) - as the federal consumer protection agency, the FTC accepts complaints by residents relating to unfair and deceptive business practices. It can also prosecute and fine those responsible. Submit your fraud complaint to the FTC online
- The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) - this federal agency is responsible for all communication in the country. It regulates phone services, monitors the use of phone technologies, and punishes their misuse. Pueblo County residents can report all scams involving caller ID spoofing, spam calls, phishing and robocalls to the FCC’s Consumer Complaint Center