How to detect & silence unknown callers on iPhone

by Johnson Daniel
Apple iPhone 13

Spam calls are one annoying thing for any mobile user, as an iPhone user, you might find this irritating and fortunately for you, there’s a way to silence any robocall/unknown caller spam on your device.

An Unkown Caller is someone who does not appear in your Contacts list, which is an address book saved on your device and accessible via the Phone or Contacts apps.

“Silence Unknown Callers” is a feature in iOS 13 and later that allows you to avoid receiving calls from people you don’t know. This blocks phone numbers you have never communicated with and are not saved in your contacts list. If you’ve previously texted with someone using their phone number, or if they’ve shared their phone number with you in an email, a phone call from that number will be accepted.

If you keep encountering spam calls on your iPhone, you can limit or put a stop to this by using the feature that allows you to silence rings and notifications from unknown callers, which we’ll cover below.

Steps to detect & silence unknown callers on iPhone

To turn on Silence Unknown Callers, go to Settings > Phone, then scroll down, tap Silence Unknown Callers, and turn on the feature.

The process mentioned above is one way to go about this, there is another procedure you can use to block unknown callers on your iPhone. This procedure requires you to download an app. Here’s the full procedure:

  • Download a call blocker (TrueCaller, RoboKiller, Hiya Caller ID and Block, Mr. Number Call Block & Lookup, etc).
  • Go to Settings > Phone.
  • Tap Call Blocking & Identification.
  • Under ‘Allow These Apps To Block Calls And Provide Caller ID,’ turn the app on or off. You can also reorder the apps based on priority. Just tap Edit and then drag the apps in the order you want them.ios14 iphone11 pro settings phone call blocking id apps on

Before you enable Silence Unknown Callers, make sure you have important contacts saved, or you may miss an important phone call. The call will still go to voicemail and appear in your recent calls list, but you will not be notified while it is ringing.

How it works

Using Silence Unknown Callers 

Unknown number calls are silenced, routed to voicemail, and appear in your recent calls list. Incoming calls will come in from people in your contacts list, recent calls list, and Siri Suggestions to let you know who’s calling based on phone numbers in your emails or text messages.

If you make an emergency call, ‘Silence Unknown Callers’ will be temporarily disabled for the next 24 hours so that your iPhone can be reached.

Using third-party apps

When you receive a call, your device compares the caller’s phone number to the list of phone numbers in your third-party spam apps. If a match is found, iOS displays the identifying label selected by the app, such as Spam or Telemarketing. If the app determines that a phone number is a spam, it may choose to automatically block the phone call. Calls are never routed to third-party developers.

If you suspect a number is from a spam caller, you can manually block the number on your device. Manually blocked phone numbers are listed under Blocked Contacts.

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