Area codes are three-digit code prefixes identifying a specific geographic area within the North American Numbering Plan (NANP). The NANP is the telephone numbering system within which telephony communications are managed in the United States, Canada, and some Caribbean countries by the NANP Administrator (NANPA). The NANP is divided into smaller Numbering Plan Areas (NPAs) which are each identified by a three-digit area code. You can find the area code of any geographical area in the United States by using an area code lookup tool online.
Currently, only one area code serves Charlotte County - Area code 941.
Area Code 941
Area code 941 was created from area code 813 and was first used on May 28, 1995. It was split in 1999 to form area code 863 and again in 2002 to create area code 239. Area code 941 is the only area code serving North Port, Port Charlotte, and Sarasota. Other locations covered by the 941-area code include Bradenton, Venice, Punta Gorda, Bayshore Gardens, and Englewood.
What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Charlotte County?
More and more people are turning away from using wired telephony service as the primary telephony communication option in Charlotte and Florida. Wireless services are in huge demand and are not short of subscribers. According to a survey conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics in 2018, 60.9% of Florida residents aged 18 and above, used wireless telephony service exclusively while only 4.0% used landline-only telephony service. The estimates also reveal that among Florida residents below the age of 18, 72.9% used wireless telephony service exclusively while only 1.7% used landline-only telephony service.
Charlotte residents are spoilt for choice when considering cellular phone plans on offer from wireless service providers. Although many factors must be considered while making a decision, signing up with a service that has good coverage in your local area should be top of your consideration. The features and bonuses on a plan do not matter much if messages and phone calls never complete.
Fortunately, all four major wireless carriers in the United States have decent coverage in Charlotte County. In the county seat of Punta Gorda, Verizon has the best overall coverage with a coverage score of 89%. AT&T's coverage score is rated 86%, T-Mobile's is rated 82%, while Sprint has a coverage score of 60%.
Several other small wireless carriers exist in Charlotte County offering cell phone plans that are often more affordable than plans from the major Mobile Network Operators (MNOs). These smaller carriers are known as Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs). They operate on the networks of the major carriers and have plenty of coverage, typically as much coverage as the parent MNOs.
Phone plans are also on offer from multiple VoIP service providers in Charlotte County. Many phone users find VoIP services more beneficial and customizable than the features on offer from cellular telephone service providers. VoIP is more portable in that the services can be used anywhere a broadband internet connection is available. Many VoIP service plans also include features such as caller ID, call waiting, unlimited nationwide calling, conference calling, and sometimes even unlimited calls to certain international destinations.
What are Charlotte County Phone Scams?
Charlotte County phone scams are fraudulent activities of con artists perpetrated using phone calls, text messages, and robocalls to fleece Charlotte County residents or obtain sensitive private information from them. The majority of phone scams will be unsuccessful if targets refrain from answering calls or respond to the scam messages received. Being aware of this, phone scammers often use spoofing technique to make their calls appear like it is coming from trusted sources.
Caller ID spoofing is the practice of falsifying the caller ID information on a call recipient's phone display. Fraudsters calling from overseas can make their caller ID information appear with the local area codes of their targets. Hence, targets are more likely to respond to calls and messages. Upon answering calls, phone scammers proceed to use a variety of tricks including promises and threats to obtain money or personal information from Charlotte County residents.
Phone lookup applications can help unmask the real identities of phone scammers.
What are Charlotte County Grandparent Scams?
Often, grandparents receive frantic calls from individuals claiming to be their grandchildren. The purported grandchild sounds distressed and appears to be calling from a noisy location. The caller claims to be involved in some type of trouble such as being in a car accident or being in jail. The caller asks for a huge sum to pay the hospital bill or bond out of jail. The grandparent may even be contacted several hours or days later for more money. Typically, the con artist claims embarrassment about the supposed trouble and asks the grandparent to keep the requests and conversations secret. Phone lookup applications can help uncover the true identities of grandparent scammers.
What are Charlotte County Law Enforcement Impersonation Scams?
The law enforcement impersonation scam involves persons claiming to be members of the sheriff's office or other law enforcement agencies in Charlotte County. The scam is intended to convince targets that they have outstanding debts or active warrants due to committing criminal activities. The perpetrators insist that the targets must purchase gift cards to pay fines in order not to be arrested.
Law enforcement scammers may also play on the emotions of their targets to obtain information such as date of birth, Social Security numbers, credit card numbers, home addresses, and phone numbers. Once they have that information, these fraudsters then impersonate the victims in fraudulent activities. Note that the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office does not call residents to place them under duress. It also does not demand that residents pay fines with threats of arrests. You can use free reverse phone number lookup tools online to find out who called and who a number is registered to. By uncovering the true identity of a caller, you can avoid an impersonation scam.
What are Charlotte County Utility Scams?
Scammers make unsolicited calls to Charlotte County residents stating that they are from utility companies and threatening immediate disconnection unless payments for supposed overdue bills are made immediately. Sometimes, the scammers are aggressive and claim to know targets' utility billing details. They also spoof trusted utility company telephone numbers to look real to targets. To stop them from going through with the threats, scammers attempt to obtain targets' bank account information or request that they purchase prepaid credit cards.
Another variation of the scam involves a call to a target stating that there has been a mistake with the consumer's utility account. For the inconvenience, the caller says that the target will receive a big discount on the bill and future bills if payment is made immediately to a special account number. The caller sounds apologetic for the problem. After payment has been made, the caller calls back to say there was a problem processing the payment and asks the target to try again, promising to refund the customer by check for the amount of overpayment. The victim never receives any check while the scammer receives both payments. Reverse phone number lookup applications can prevent residents from falling victim to phone scams.
What are Charlotte County Social Security Scams?
In the social security scam, the callers inform the targets of illegitimate or fraudulent activities linked to their Social Security numbers or accounts. Following the supposed compromise to the account, the caller claims that the target’s account has been suspended or deactivated. In order to resolve the issue or obtain a new Social Security number, a target is required to pay for a one-time service through a prepaid card, gift card, or wire transfer. The scammer may also request personal information such as bank account information and credit card details to fix the purported problem. Note that the Social Security Administration does not block or suspend Social Security numbers. To verify that callers are who they say they are, you can use good reverse phone lookup tools online to quickly do a number lookup or reverse number lookup.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Robocalls are automated phone calls placed to telephone users through the use of automated dialing announcing devices (ADADs). ADADs are computerized hardware or software capable of storing thousands of telephone numbers and placing calls to selected numbers automatically. Robocalls are quite useful when important messages are required to be delivered to large audiences. This capability has made it an attractive proposition for telemarketers and political campaigners. Charities seeking donations and government agencies issuing public service announcements are part of a small group of persons permitted to contact citizens with robocalls without having obtained the consent of the contacted persons.
Otherwise, per the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991, robocall users and telemarketers are required to obtain the express permissions of recipients before contacting them using robocalls. However, many businesses and crooked individuals still illegitimately contact phone users with robocalls without their consent. These are illegitimate calls that are intrusive and annoying. Many of these automated calls are spam calls sent out with baits in the form of messages to defraud individuals.
A reverse phone number lookup application can identify if an incoming call is a robocall and help you avoid scams. Other steps you can take to avoid robocall scams and limit robocall intrusions include:
- Hang up on robocalls. If you answer a call and hear a pre-recorded message, hang up immediately. Do not press any number to speak with live agents.
- Do not trust the information on your caller ID display. With spoofing technology, calls with true origins outside of Lancaster County and Nebraska can appear with local area codes.
- Do not provide or confirm personal or financial information to anyone over the phone.
- Request your phone provider to block numbers associated with robocalls.
- Download and install a third-party call-blocking application on your mobile phone such as Nomorobo, Truecaller, Hiya, and YouMail.
- Add your phone number to the National Do Not Call Registry maintained by the FTC. Registration is free and can be done by calling (888) 382-1222 from the number you intend to register or online. Registering your phone number exempts you from receiving illegal telemarketing calls. If you get a robocall after 31 days of registration, it is probably from a scammer.
How to Spot and Report Charlotte County Phone Scams?
As smartphone technology continues to evolve, con artists are also increasingly finding new ways to defraud people using phones. These scams can cost victims anywhere in the range of a few dollars to entire life savings. As using mobile phones become a more integral part of people's daily lives, it is important to be aware of the tricks used by con artists and how to avoid them
You can reduce the odds of falling victim to phone scams by using reverse phone lookup number lookup services to identify potential phone scams. You can also take note of the following scam telltale signs when you receive unsolicited calls:
- The caller threatens you with an arrest if you do not pay a huge amount of money: Scammers often threaten targets with imminent arrests or other forms of legal actions. However, they offer solutions in the form of heavy fines. Do not ask for proof or engage in conversation. Simply hang up.
- The caller poses as a government official and says you have won a grant: This is a ploy used by fraudsters to get you to divulge sensitive personal information. Do not let yourself be fooled even if the phone number looks like a local area number because the caller may have spoofed caller ID information. Conduct a search online or verify from other sources to ascertain the truth.
- The caller poses as a legitimate caller and says you can only transfer funds through a specific method: Scammers will insist on difficult-to-trace methods such as prepaid debit cards, gift cards, and wire transfers to get money from their targets. Reputable companies and agencies will give you multiple options that are not dubious.
- The caller says that you have won a free prize or vacation: If an unsolicited caller says you have been selected as a winner in any contest but have to make a small payment upfront to obtain your prize, do not take the bait.
- The caller asks for sensitive personal information: Fraudsters want to obtain your personal information such as Social Security number, birth date, bank account information, and credit card information for use in identity thefts. Do not release such information to unknown callers over the phone.
- The caller ID is hidden: A caller with pure intentions does not have a reason to hide caller ID information. Do not answer calls from hidden numbers. If you do, do not believe what you are told. Hiding caller identification is a common trick used by scammers who do not want to be traced.
You can file complaints in Charlotte County with any of the following public bodies if you have been contacted by a scammer:
- The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office and local police departments: If you have received a call from a scammer, you can contact your local police department or the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office at (941) 639-2101. In the county seat of Panama City, you can contact the Punta Gorda Police Department at (941) 639-4111.
- The Florida Attorney General's Office: If you think you have been the victim of a scam, call the Florida Attorney General Office consumer toll-free at (866) 966-7226. You can also file a consumer complaint online.
- The Federal Trade Commission: Through the FTC's National Do Not Call Registry, phone users can reduce unwanted calls by adding their numbers to the list. If you receive unsolicited calls 31 days after adding your number to the registry, they are most likely scam calls.
- The Federal Communications Commission: The FCC allows you to file a complaint with the Commission online if you believe you have received an illegal call, or if you think you are the victim of a phone scam.
- Social Security Administration: If you receive a scam call or you suspect you have been a victim of a scam from the Social Security Administration, report such calls by calling the Office of the Inspector General at (800) 269-0271 or make a report online.