What are Cass County Area Codes?
The only area code serving the residents of Cass County is 701. An area code is a three-digit number designating a Numbering Plan Area (NPA). The first NPAs were introduced with the creation of the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) in 1947. Before the NANP, American phone companies used different, often incompatible, telephone exchange systems. The NANP unified these exchanges and created a single system that makes call routing more efficient. Linking NPAs with area codes also made it easier to determine the origins of calls. In a typical 10-digit North American phone number, the area code is the first three digits.
Area Code 701
One of the original 86 area codes created at the institution of the NANP in 1947, area code 701 covers the entirety of North Dakota and is the only area code for the state. As a result, seven-digit dialing is all that is required for calls within the state. This area code is estimated to be exhausted in 2030. Communities in Cass County served by area code 701 include Ayr, Davenport, Fargo, Oxbow, and West Fargo.
What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Cass County?
More than half of the residents of North Dakota have made the shift to wireless phone services from landlines. This is one of the conclusions of a 2018 wireless substitution survey conducted by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics. The results of the study show that 58.4% of adults in the state only used wireless phones for telecommunications while a small proportion (3.4%) of them still relied solely on landline phones. Among minors in the state, 64.7% were exclusive wireless phone users while a very tiny fraction (0.8%) of the demographic indicated that they only used landline phones for telecommunication.
Residents of Cass County can sign up for phone plans from all four major carriers. Verizon boasts the widest phone network in the state with 97.8% coverage. AT&T comes a close second with 97.4% coverage of North Dakota. T-Mobile’s coverage is not far off. Its network covers 94% of the state. Sprint is a distant fourth with a poor 6% coverage of North Dakota. In addition to these major carriers, smaller carriers also offer cell phone plans in Cass County and the rest of North Dakota. These regional carriers are known as MVNOs or Mobile Virtual Network Operators. While they do not build out their own networks, they rely on the infrastructure of major carriers to provide cell phone service in the state. MVNOs buy network services in bulk and bundled them in plans meant to cater to the specific needs of the residents in their areas of operations.
Cass County residents with broadband internet access at home or work can save money on their phone bills by signing up for VoIP phone services. VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol is a networking technology that carries voice signals over the internet as data packets. VoIP phone service providers can also offer video calls and teleconferencing solutions for a lot less than traditional phone service providers. Extended calls and long-distance calls are cheaper on VoIP phones than landline and cell phones.
What are Cass County Phone Scams?
These are telephone frauds perpetrated in Cass County or by outsiders targeting residents of the county. The aims of phone scammers are to defraud their targets and steal other valuables like confidential identity and financial records. Fraudsters use certain enabling phone tools and services to find their targets and trick them into parting with their valuables. They use robocalls and spam calls to cast wide nets for potential targets and caller ID spoofing and voice phishing to impersonate loved ones and authority figures.
There are also phone tools and services that can help residents of Cass County fight back and avoid phone scams. The most important ones are call blocking and reverse phone number lookup. In addition to these tools, residents should also be aware of new and emerging phone scams in their communities. The most commonly reported telephone frauds in Cass County and North Dakota include IRS scams, grandparent scams, romance scams and jury duty scams.
What are Cass County IRS Scams?
These scams are run by fraudsters threatening residents about owed taxes. They may send threatening messages or call and impersonate IRS employees. These fraudsters usually threaten their victims with immediate arrest, jail, deportation, or revocation of licenses. To avoid these outcomes, they ask their victims to send payments by gift cards, prepaid debit cards, and wire transfer.
A free reverse phone number lookup can show that the number used by a stranger claiming to be an IRS agent is not associated with the tax agency. However, scammers may employ caller ID spoofing to make their calls look like they are coming from legitimate IRS sources. The North Dakota Attorney General’s Office warns residents that the IRS does not send threatening messages or call to threatening taxpayers. The federal tax agency usually communicates with taxpayers by regular mail.
What are Cass County Grandparent Scams?
Targeting elderly residents of the county, fraudsters call and claim to be their grandchildren and in need of immediate financial assistance. In this impostor scam, the fraudster may claim they are stranded in a border state or in Canada or Mexico and need money to return home. They may also claim to need money to get out of jail, pay hospital bills, or pay legal fees. The Attorney General’s Office informs residents to warn their elderly relatives about these scams. Targets of grandparent scams should call their family members even when those calling for financial help beg for secrecy. Families of elderly targets can confirm these scams by using suspicious phone number lookup to identify the unknown persons trying to con their loved ones.
What are Cass County Romance Scams?
Romance scammers create fake profiles on dating sites and apps and also comb social media sites for targets. They are quite charming and ready for a long con. After striking up a relationship, the scammer showers their target with affection by calling and texting multiple times a day. However, they make up excuses not to meet in person. After gaining the trust and love of the target, they call them with sudden news of emergencies and ask for money. They claim to need the money to go abroad or come visit their target, to pay off pressing debts, or to pay for medical expenses.
A romance scammer can defraud their victim repeatedly. A quick phone number lookup search can help a romance scam victim determine that the stranger they are in a relationship with is not who they say they are or where they say they live. The first step to take after discovering this scam is to stop communicating with the fraudster. You may then report them to local law enforcement.
What are Cass County Jury Duty Scams?
In these scams, fraudsters pretend to be law enforcement officers when they call their targets and accuse them of missing jury duty. These scammers threaten their victims with immediate arrest unless they pay a fine. These scammers ask for immediate payments and instruct their victims to buy prepaid debit cards and gift cards and then read the numbers to them on the phone. Some ask their victims to send cash or bring it to them outside local courthouses.
Do not let a stranger on the phone scare you into paying a fine for missing jury duty. Call the local law enforcement or court to confirm that they are indeed asking for the fine mentioned by the scammer. Use a reverse number lookup to identify the stranger impersonating a law enforcement officer to confirm your suspicions.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Robocalls are automated phone calls placed by auto-dialers delivering pre-recorded messages to a large number of phone users. When they were first introduced, robocalls were meant to be fast, cost-effective mass communication tools for political campaigns, telemarketers, and organizations delivering public service announcements. They are cheap and easy to set up and require little human intervention when operational. These positive attributes also make robocalls appealing to scammers and dishonest telemarketers.
Like robocalls, spam calls are unwanted phone calls placed to large groups of people. However, a spam call is likely to be placed by an actual person calling a long list of auto-generated or illegally obtained phone numbers. Scammers and underhanded telemarketers are embracing robocalls and spam calls and using them a lot more. This is why the number of these unwanted and unsolicited calls reaching American phone users keeps increasing annually. Residents of Cass County can take the following steps to cut down on the number of robocalls and spam calls ringing their phones:
- Do not assume your phone’s caller ID function is infallible. Scammers use caller ID spoofing to make their calls appear to be from friends and family members as well as authority figures and local businesses that their targets can easily recognize
- Hang up on a phone call as soon as you discover it is a robocall or spam call
- Do not follow instructions given during a robocall or spam call on how to remove your number from their call list. Following such prompts only causes more unwanted calls sent your way
- Register your phone number on the National Do Not Call Registry to stop receiving robocalls from legitimate telemarketers. All telemarketing calls received 31 days of joining this registry are likely from scammers and spammers
- Identify strangers using unknown numbers to ring your phone by submitting their numbers for reverse phone lookup searches. Identify scammers in this way is useful for avoid them and reporting them to law enforcement
- Block calls from unknown or blacklisted numbers on your smartphone. Carriers and certain third-party communication apps also offer call blocking features backed by regularly updated blacklists.
How to Spot and Report Cass County Phone Scams
Residents of Cass County should know that anyone can be a victim of a phone scam. While tools like call blocking and phone number lookup are useful for avoiding phone scams, they are not substitutes for staying aware of phone scam trends in the county. The Office of the Attorney General publishes a useful phone scam resource that Cass County residents should read.
When talking to a stranger on the phone, look out for the following tell-tale signs of phone scams:
- Threats - scammers threatening their targets to make them too scared to carefully consider their claims. Most impostor scams involve the use of threats for this purpose
- High-pressure sales tactics - scammers selling bogus investment and business offers pressure their targets to make immediate commitments. They do this by offering steep discounts and higher rewards. They may also claim their attractive offers are only available for a limited time and that prices or demand for their goods are due to go up any day now
- Requesting payment by unofficial channels - no true representative of a public or private organization will ask that you to overdue bills, owed taxes, or fines with cash, prepaid debit card, gift card, cryptocurrency, wire transfer, or a Venmo transfer
- Inability to providing proper documentation - scammers are unable to provide written documentation confirming their identities, authority, offers, and requests. Insist on establishing a paper trail for every interaction
- Request for confidential records - fraudsters impersonating law enforcement, tech firms, and financial houses will request confidential identity and financial information these institution already have on file
Reporting phone scams is important even when these attempts are unsuccessful. Failed scam attempts can be as illuminating as successful ones. Therefore, Cass County residents are encouraged to report telephone frauds targeting them to help bring fraudsters to justice and increase public awareness of scam tactics used. These residents can report phone scams to the following agencies:
- The North Dakota Attorney General’s Office - the Attorney General’s Office has a consumer protection division tasked with protecting residents of the state from consumer frauds and other deceitful business practices. Report a phone scam to this office by calling 1-800-472-2600
- The Cass County Sheriff’s Office and police departments in the county are primary law enforcement agencies. Report phone scams to the Sheriff’s Office by calling (701) 241-5805
- The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) - this is the federal agency responsible for consumer protection. Its role includes protecting residents against unfair and deceptive business practices by prosecuting individuals and organizations engaging in such frauds. Cass County residents can submit fraud complaints to the FTC online
- The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) - as the federal agency in charge of all communication in the US, the FCC frowns upon using phone tools and services to scam citizens. It has the power to identify, find, and prosecute offenders. Residents can report frauds involving illegal robocalls, spam calls, caller ID spoofing, and phishing to the FCC’s Consumer Complaint Center