How do you report harassing phone calls?


Quick Answer

Harassing phone calls can be reported by contacting the local police department and phone company. Phone companies require police subpoenas to release private information, so reporting the harassment to the police first is recommended, especially if the harassment is serious.

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Full Answer

Preventing harassing telephone calls is a matter of interest to both phone companies and local police. Phone companies can be contacted first, especially if the harassing calls are little more than a nuisance.

Phone companies vary in their policies on how harassment should be reported. Some have Annoyance Desks or corporate security departments that take complaints. They generally mail customers paperwork to fill out. Other phone companies request that customers report harassment to police first, then contact the company once the police report is filed.

The first step to filing any police report is calling or visiting the local police department. If filing over the phone, the person being harassed should ask to have a dispatcher sent to her home or place of business. The police require certain information for this report, including the nature of the calls, any identifying information like the caller's accent or perceived age and gender, and, if possible, the phone number the harasser was calling from. Once the report is filed, the police may issue a subpoena. Having a subpoena legally allows the phone company to release private information to help further the investigation.

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