Area codes are the sets of the three-digit numbers that precede local phone numbers in the United States. Forsyth County area codes distinguish the Numbering Plan Areas (NPAs) in the county as designated by the North American Numbering Plan (NANP). As authorized by the Federal Communication Commission (FCC), the North Carolina Utility Commission (NCUC) manages the state's area codes and assigns them as demand for more phone numbers arises.
Forsyth County currently utilizes two area codes. These are:
Area Code 336
Split from the 910 NPA in 1997, area code 336 is a North Carolina telephone area code that covers Forsyth County and many others in the state. Communities within the 336 NPA in Forsyth County include Winston-Salem, Rural Hall, Clemmons, Stanleyville, and Kernersville.
Area Code 743
Area code 743 overlays the 336 NPA and serves the same cities and neighborhoods as area code 743.
What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Forsyth County?
As obtained from a 2018 CDC survey, North Carolina had a widespread adoption of wireless telephony services. Only a few households used landlines. According to data gathered from the review, only about 4.5% of Georgia's adult demographic still used landline phones solely for telephony services. About 57.3% of them had adopted cell phones exclusively for communication. The survey also revealed the children population that used landlines as their means of telephony as 2.6%. About 69% of them already adopted wireless telephone services as of that year. The trend confirms that North Carolina residents are becoming more inclined to wireless phone services for telecommunication.
Forsyth County enjoys exceptional coverage by the four national phone carriers, although network strengths and spread differ across the county. For instance, in Winston-Salem, AT&T has the highest network coverage of 94%, while Verizon provides 90% coverage. T-Mobile covers 80% of the city, while Sprint has the least network spread at 78%. A few Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) equally serve some neighborhoods in the county.
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) service extends an alternative telephony service for Forsyth County residents at more affordable rates. It routes communication using reliable broadband internet connections, and as such, residents can place voice and video calls over the internet. VoIP is one excellent means by which employees working from home at different locations can interact and share information at relatively low costs.
What are Forsyth County Phone Scams?
Forsyth County phone scams are fraudulent acts perpetrated over phone calls to get naive persons to give away their money or share personal information. Phone scammers in Forsyth County employ varying tricks to deceive their targets. The North Carolina Office of the Attorney General (OAG) is primarily responsible for protecting residents from phone scams in the state. It provides scam alerts to keep residents abreast of the current phone scams and educates them on how to avoid falling prey. The consequences of falling victim to phone scams are usually financial and identity loss. However, reverse phone lookups can help Forsyth County residents identify phone scams and avoid them.
The FTC receives phone scam complaints via its online complaint assistant, particularly on phone scam incidents. Persons who fall victim to phone scams in Forsyth County can report to the OAG online or by calling (919) 716-6000. Phone scam victims in the county can also call the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office on (336) 727-2112 to file their reports.
The prevalent phone scams in Forsyth County include:
What are IRS Scams?
IRS scams have many variations and are perpetrated by fraudsters who specialize in phone spoofing while pretending to be agents of the Internal Revenue Services (IRS). You can run a caller's phone number through an application that offers free reverse phone lookup services to know who called if the caller claims to be with the IRS. Doing a reverse phone look up can also help you identify a spoofed call and avoid this phone scam. In the most common variant of the IRS scam in Forsyth County, fraudsters will leave voicemail messages for their marks and claim some issues require urgent attention with their tax accounts. Such calls are typically threatening and end with warnings requesting targets to call them. The fake IRS employee will request some personal information for supposed verification if the target calls back. The result is usually identity theft. Do not return such a call. Instead, contact the IRS directly on the phone numbers listed on their official website to confirm the caller's claim.
The IRS warns against sharing sensitive information with unknown persons who claim to work for the IRS. It is rare for the IRS to contact anyone over the phone to request money or sensitive information. IRS scam victims can report their encounters to the FTC by calling 1 (888) 382-1222. They can also file complaints online with the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA).
What are Jury Duty Scams?
Fraudsters call Forsyth County residents on missed jury duty and identify themselves as Deputies of the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office. Reported cases had it that they used badge numbers and real names of deputies to fool their targets. Such calls aim at extorting unsuspecting residents. The callers are known for intimidating their marks into sending money with legal terms such as contempt of court and bench warrant. They will inform the called parties of the implication of not appearing for jury duty and threaten to arrest them. Jury duty fraudsters often offer to cancel arrests on the condition that the target must pay them. They may request wire transfers or instruct their marks to send prepaid cards to addresses which they will provide. In some cases, these fraudsters may ask for their targets' personal information so they can also commit identity theft.
The Forsyth County Sheriff's Office says its officers will never call to demand fines for missed jury duty and warns against sending money to unknown persons over the phone. Typically, persons who miss jury duty are notified by mail. Know that anyone who calls and claims to be a Deputy Sheriff and threatens to arrest you for missed jury duty is a fraudster and should be ignored. Free reverse phone lookup services can help you uncover such a caller's identity and avoid this scam. Call the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office on (336) 727-2112 to report an incident of jury duty scam.
What are COVID-19 Contact Tracing Scams?
Contact tracers identify Forsyth County residents who have been in contact with persons who tested positive for coronavirus. COVID-19 risk level in the county is high. Consequently, phone scammers are exploiting the fear associated with coronavirus to cheat unsuspecting residents out of their money. If you receive a call or text message from someone who claims to be a contact tracer, you can do a reverse phone lookup on their phone number to verify their identity.
If you receive a text message purportedly from a contact tracer with a link to provide some confidential information, it is an attempt to defraud you. Typically, legitimate contact tracers notify residents they suspect have had close contacts with coronavirus patients by text messages. However, such text messages do not request confidential or financial information. Legitimate contact tracers will never ask you to share your social security number or credit card numbers with them. Anyone who opens such links on their mobile device will instantly become vulnerable to scam. Phone scammers hack into their targets' mobile devices using this means to access both personal and financial information. Genuine contact tracers will only request information regarding your health and probably ask questions about places you recently visited.
Forsyth County residents who receive text messages asking them to click provided links should not do so. They should call the local health department to confirm the authenticity of such text messages. Victims of COVID-19 contact tracing scams can report it to the North Carolina Office of the Attorney General by calling (919) 716-6000.
What are Immigration Scams?
Immigration scam is targeted at immigrants who reside in Forsyth County to rip them off. Anyone who falls victim to this phone scam in the county can file a complaint online with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Many immigrants in the county have lost quite some fortune to it. In this phone scam, the callers pose as employees of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The fraudsters' usual script is their targets must urgently attend to some legal issues which may implicate them and affect their immigration status. In the process, they will ask their targets to pay them via prepaid cards and wire transfers if they want their names cleared from the supposed legal issues. They often threaten to immediately involve law enforcement once they perceive their targets are headstrong and may not pay.
If you receive this type of call in Forsyth County, do not be in a hurry to send money or share your personal information. Contact the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office on (336) 727-2112 to inform them of the incident. You can call the USCIS on (800) 375-5283 for any information regarding your immigration status and verify such a call. Applications offering reverse phone number lookup services can help you identify the caller and consequently avoid falling victim. The USCIS will never request anyone to pay money to an individual, especially not by questionable payment channels.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Most robocalls are unsolicited and can be annoying due to their intrusive nature. They deliver recorded messages to phone numbers using automated diallers. Phone scammers use robocalls to trick unsuspecting persons in Forsyth County into disclosing personal information and parting with money. Although robocalls always seem like a hard nut to crack, you can identify them by running suspicious phone numbers through search engines that provide reverse phone lookup services.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is at the center of combating the robocall menace, and it provides information on how consumers can block unwanted calls to prevent robocall scams. The best ways to avoid robocall scams in Forsyth County include:
- Report a robocall number to the FTC online or by calling 1 (888) 382-1222.
- Think of every robocall as a potential scam call. End a call once you realize what it is.
- Contact your telephone company to know if they offer a call-blocking service. Most phone companies offer services that identify, filter, and prevent robocall numbers from calling a phone. If your provider has one, use it to block suspected robocall numbers.
- Join the Do Not Call Registry to stop unwanted calls. Ignore every call from robocall numbers once you are enrolled on the registry and treat them as potential scam calls.
- Avoid answering calls from phone numbers you do not have in your contact list.
How Can You Spot and Report Forsyth Phone Scams?
Identifying the telltale signs of phone scams can prevent you from falling victim and avoiding financial and identity losses. Forsyth County residents must understand these signs and the emerging ones by constantly educating themselves. Many consumer protection agencies provide educational resources on their websites on how to avoid phone scams. Generally, doing phone number lookups on unknown numbers can go a long way in preventing residents from phone scams. The warning signs of phone scams in Forsyth County include:
- An unknown caller whose information is inconsistent throughout a phone call is a potential scammer.
- An unknown person who asks you to send money via wire transfers and gift cards is likely a phone scammer. Transactions on these channels are hard to track, and no legitimate business will request such.
- Someone who claims to be with local law enforcement and threatens you with arrest warrants but offers to cancel the arrest if you pay some money is a fraudster.
- A caller who claims to be with the IRS and asks you to pay owed taxes immediately to avoid arrest is a fraudster. IRS employees do not contact taxpayers by phone except on request and will never request payments over the phone.
Some government agencies provide consumer education on phone scams and are striving to reduce incidents of phone scams in Forsyth County. Phone scam victims can also file complaints of fraud incidents with them. These agencies include:
Federal Trade Commission - The National Do Not Call Registry was developed by the FTC for persons who wish to reduce the intrusion of unsolicited calls and avoid phone scams. If you fall victim to a robocall or other phone scams in Forsyth County, report to the FTC by calling 1 (888) 382-1222 or file a complaint online.
Forsyth County Sheriff's Office- The Forsyth County Sheriff's Office educates residents on all public safety issues, including phone scams. Phone scam incidents in the county can be reported to the Sheriff's Office by calling (336) 727-2112.
Internal Revenue Services - Forsyth County residents can learn from the scam alerts provided by the IRS To prevent them from falling victim to tax-related scams. If you believe you have been a victim of an IRS phone scam, file a complaint online with TIGTA or call 1 (800) 366-4484.
North Carolina Office of the Attorney General - The OAG publishes scam alerts on the latest phone scams and tips on avoiding them. A phone scam victim in Forsyth County can file a complaint online with the NOAG or call (919) 716-6000.