What are LaSalle County Area Codes?
LaSalle County is located in the north-central region of the State of Illinois. It was created from Tazewell and Putnam Counties on January 15, 1831. It is bordered in the southwest by Livingston County, Grundy County to the east, and DeKalb County to the north. As of July 1, 2019, the county had an estimated population of 108,669. The largest city and county seat is Ottawa.
Area codes were created as part of the North American Numbering Plan which the Bell System put into place in the 1940s. The NANP was designed to replace the complicated system that relied heavily on human operators to manually move calls through the system. Area codes were established to make calls possible from anyone to anyone anywhere in an automated way. An area code is a three-digit number that identifies one of the telephone areas into which the United States is divided and that precedes the local telephone number when dialing a call between areas. You can find the area code of any geographical area in the United States by using an area code lookup tool online.
There are currently two area codes serving LaSalle County – Area codes 779 and 815.
Area Code 779
Area code 779 was created from area code 815 and was first used on March 17, 2007. It covers north-eastern Illinois except for the Chicago metro area. It includes the cities of Joliet, DeKalb, and Rockford. It is an overlay for area code 815. Other locations covered by this area code include Crystal Lake, Romeoville, Plainfield, Kankakee, and McHenry.
Area Code 815
Area code 815 is one of the original 86 area codes created by AT&T and the Bell System in 1947. It initially served northern Illinois except Quad Cities and Chicago. In 2007, area code 779 was created and is currently an overlay to the 815-area code. Area code 815 serves the same areas as area code 779.
What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in LaSalle County?
While LaSalle County residents could not find sufficient cell phone plans to vary their choices at one point, many wireless carriers now offer multiple plans at various price points. At that time, wireless telephony penetration was quite low. Now, that has changed drastically. According to a survey carried out by the National Center for Health Statistics in 2018, 59.8% of Illinois residents aged 18 and above used wireless-only telephony service, while only 3.0% used landline telephony service exclusively. Among residents below the age of 18, 68.9% used wireless telephony service exclusively, while only 0.5% used landline-only telephony service.
While it has become relatively easy to find affordable cell phone plans in LaSalle County, it is important to consider the coverage in your local area before contemplating whether the price or features meet your budget and needs. LaSalle County residents can purchase cell phone plans from all four major Mobile Network Operators in the county. These carriers all have decent coverage in the cities and communities in LaSalle County. In the county seat of Ottawa, T-Mobile has the best overall coverage with a score of 99%. Verizon has a coverage score of 86%, while AT&T and Sprint both have a coverage score of 66%.
Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) also operate in LaSalle County. These carriers are typically not well known as MNOs. MVNOs rely on infrastructure leased from the MNOs to provide service to their customers. You need not worry about the coverage for these smaller carriers as coverage is usually as strong as the parent MNO leasing the infrastructure in use by the MVNO.
Many LaSalle County residents use Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services to make and receive phone calls. VoIP is a technology that converts voice signals into digital formats to make telephony communications possible. After digitization, converted signals move over high-speed networks to reach the destinations. VoIP customers in LaSalle County find many advantages to using the service. One advantage is that VoIP works wherever the user has a broadband connection. Hence, users are only charged for data and not minutes used.
What are LaSalle County Phone Scams?
LaSalle County phone scams are illicit activities of criminals perpetrated using phone calls to extort LaSalle County residents of money or personal information. Phone scams are no longer a new thing. However, scammers are now bolder and more sophisticated. Although the steady evolution of technology has opened up many opportunities to increase productivity, it has also created new pathways for con artists to gain access to the private information of other persons through phone scams. Popular phone scams in LaSalle County include sheriff impersonation scams, tech support scams, refund and recovery scams, and emergency scams. Phone lookup applications can help uncover the true identities of scam callers.
What are LaSalle County Sheriff Impersonation Scams?
Many LaSalle County residents have reported receiving phone calls from persons identifying themselves as deputies of the LaSalle County Sheriff's Office. They inform targets that they have outstanding arrest warrants and instruct them to call specific telephone numbers to make arrangements to post bail. "Bail" is collected in the form of gift cards of various amounts or prepaid debit cards. Some of these unsolicited callers also ask their targets to provide their credit card numbers to pay bails. Note that the LaSalle County Sheriff's Office does not call people to inform them of warrants or fines. The Office does not also give people an option to pay fines with gift cards. Reverse phone number lookup applications can prevent residents from falling victim to impersonation scams.
What are LaSalle County Refund and Recovery Scams?
Refund and recovery scams are notorious as they target persons who have already lost money to other scams. It is common among scammers and their networks to keep lists containing information about people who have already lost money to fraud. The information includes names, addresses, phone numbers, scams perpetrated, and how much money was paid. Scammers buy, sell, and trade these lists, believing that scam victims remain good targets for being scammed again.
Refund and recovery scammers promise to recover your money if you pay them or give them financial information or money first. Some name the upfront fee as "retainer fee", "tax", "administrative charge", or "processing fee." If you pay the requested fee, they will disappear with the money and offer nothing in return. 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 LaSalle County Emergency Scams?
Sometimes referred to as grandparent scams, emergency scams are perpetrated by persons claiming to be related to targets. Typically, an emergency scammer will pretend to be the target's grandchild. The callers say they are in some kind of trouble and need money immediately. Often, it involves car accidents, trouble associated with returning from foreign countries, or requests for bail money.
Emergency scams may involve other perpetrators who pretend to be law enforcement officers or lawyers who claim to need money to "fix" the problem. Emergency scammers usually ask grandparents to keep the conversations and financial requests secret and not to tell other family members. Financial help is usually requested through wire transfers or prepaid debit cards. You can use free reverse phone lookup tools to verify the identity of the person behind a call.
What are LaSalle County Tech Support Scams?
Previously, tech support scams were perpetrated through scammers peddling bogus security software and setting up fake websites offering security scans. Now, the scam begins with phone calls from crooked persons trying to obtain the trust of their targets by pretending to work with well-known tech companies. These scammers can get your name and other basic information from public directories and may even guess what computer software is in use by their targets.
Tech support scammers may ask you to perform a series of complex tasks and even target legitimate computer files and claim that they are viruses. They use such tactics to scare targets into believing they are serious and urgent tech problems with their devices. To fix the purported issues, they ask targets to give them remote access to their computers. Upon gaining access, they change the computer settings potentially leaving the devices vulnerable. They may also trick people into installing malware that could steal sensitive data such as usernames and passwords. Payment for these phony services and purchases of anti-viruses and other diagnostic tools are requested through prepaid debit cards, wire transfers, or cryptocurrencies. If you are targeted in a tech support scam, you may use a phone lookup service to determine if the call is associated with a scam or scammer.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
A robocall is a phone call delivering a prerecorded message through an auto-dialing application or hardware. Auto-dialing devices are computerized systems capable of maintaining preset lists of contacts and contacting them automatically. Some robocalls provide useful information such as school announcements to teachers and parents, charities soliciting support, and other public-service announcements issued by government agencies.
Despite these public and beneficial uses of robocalls, fraudulent persons illegally contact residents using robocalls to lure them in releasing money or private information. Technology has made it cheap and easy for scammers to place thousands of robocalls to people over the internet in what is now considered intrusive spam calls by many.
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:
- Be cautious when providing your number on websites. Offers for prizes or gift cards are often used to harvest telephone numbers for robocall solicitations.
- Register your telephone number on all available and official Do Not Call lists. You can register on the national Do Not Call Registry by visiting the Registry’s website or calling (888) 382-1222. You can register up to three phone numbers on the list.
- Explore call-blocking options from your phone service provider. You can contact your service provider to verify if call-blocking features are included in your plan or are available as add-on services.
- Download a third-party call blocking application. Most major mobile application stores provide call-blocking apps for free download on their marketplaces. Examples include Hiya, RoboKiller, Truecaller, and Nomorobo.
- Hang up on robocalls. If you hear a recorded message when you answer any call, hang up immediately.
- Ignore repeated calls from unknown callers. If an unknown caller keeps calling you. Do not hesitate to keep ignoring the calls. Such calls may originate from scammers. If the message to be delivered is so important, the caller will leave a message in the voicemail.
How to Spot and Report LaSalle County Phone Scams?
Scams are becoming harder to spot. Scammers are becoming wiser to residents refraining from answering calls from unknown callers. This has given rise to the use of caller ID spoofing to mimic the caller ID information of government agencies, utility companies, banks, insurance agencies, healthcare organizations, and other known agencies. Once a scammer gains your trust, an attempt is made to obtain your personal information which will be later used in identity theft. By using reverse number lookup tools, you can spot phone scams easily. You should stay aware of common tricks used by con artists.
Below are some other telltale signs of phone scams:
- You are contacted. When you contact a business or an agency, you know who is on the other end of the call. However, when someone contacts you first, you cannot be certain they are telling the truth. You do not know if they are who they say they are.
- The caller offers you free prize money: Scammers often pose as government officials or representatives of trusted agencies, telling you that you have won grants or prizes. Do not believe such callers. They are only luring you into divulging private information.
- An unknown person sends you an SMS instructing you to verify your personal details: Con artists put links in SMSes sent to targets to trick them into providing sensitive information online. Do not click on any links in SMSes.
- The caller asks for sensitive information: Fraudsters hide under several guises to trick targets into providing sensitive private information. Do not hand over your password, PIN, or Social Security number to anyone.
- The caller uses threats to intimidate you: Scammers sometimes intimidate targets with threats of arrests, imprisonment, and revocation of licenses to get them to send money or release sensitive information. Reputable organizations will not intimidate call recipients with threats.
- The caller wants you to send money by gift cards, cryptocurrencies, and wire transfers: These are not the usual methods through which trusted agencies request payments. When an unsolicited caller demands payment through these methods, be wary.
You can file complaints with any of the following public bodies if you have been contacted by a scammer:
- The LaSalle 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 LaSalle County Sheriff's Office at (815) 433-2161. In the county seat of Ottawa, you can contact the Ottawa City Police Department at (815) 433-2131.
- The Illinois Attorney General’s Office: To report a scam, you can file a complaint online or submit a consumer complaint form to the Attorney General’s Office by mail or in person. You can also call the office at (800) 386-5438 (Chicago), (800) 243-0618 (Springfield), or (800) 243-0607 (Carbondale).
- Federal Communications Commission: If you receive unwanted robocalls and text messages, you can file a report online with the FCC.
- Federal Trade Commission - The FTC protects consumers from deceptive and fraudulent practices. You can file a phone scam report with the FTC by completing the online complaint form.