According to the Daily Herald, a St. Charles teen got the scare of her life when she relived a scene straight out of a horror movie, all thanks to what has been described as a scary phone app that can be used to make prank phone calls. So will this prank phone app become a big problem this Halloween as everyone tries to recreate their own real-life scary movie spoof?
Here’s the real-life horror story: a 17-year-old girl was getting continuous phone calls from what appeared to be the phone line inside of her house. When a voice told her, “get out now,” she first called her mother (why?) before being told to crawl out of the window and run to a neighbor’s house. The hysterical teen’s mom called 9-1-1, but a police investigation found that she was the victim of a prank phone call. The sheriff’s department said that the calls were made using a special phone app, and they were likely made by someone that knew the girl.
So what is this scary prank phone call app, and how can others buy it to make their friends live their own ‘When a Stranger Calls’ or ‘Scream’ nightmares? Well, I was unable to find any such app after a quick internet search, as the search term “scary phone app” just brings up the classic phone prank that features a game interrupted by a scary image, and the term “scream app” just brings up an app that makes your Android screen scream when someone touches it. So there could be a terrifying twist to this tale: the phone app actually doesn’t exist.
So does this mean the scary phone calls were coming from inside the house? Not exactly. My quick internet search skills could be at fault, or the prankster could have been using something else: the spoofcard.com website.
Spoofcard.com allows you to call a house and make the number of your choice show up on the caller ID (something that’s not exactly new). It also allows for users to change their voice, making it impossible for whomever receives the call to tell who is calling them. Should something like this be illegal? Probably, but a bill making it illegal to manipulate caller I.D. info is still awaiting a vote in the Senate. In short, Spoofcard.com and services like it could be used to wreak havoc this Halloween, as victims receive “do you like scary movies?” calls that appear to be coming from inside their own house during the holiday.
So how can you save yourself from this same horrifying prank call experience? Well, you need to have an exorcism; that is, rid your house of the Ghost of Communications Past (meaning your landline). Without a home phone, you won’t have to worry about these petrifying prank calls (although it does prevent a real psychopath hiding out in your house from giving you an ample warning to get out…).