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February 9, 2023

Stop giving out your primary cell phone number to anyone. It’s the best way to stay safe and prevent annoying calls from hitting your main number – all for free. I got a free second number years ago and am using it today. I use the free second number to hand out at the grocery store, pharmacy, credit card company, utility, retailer, or anyone I wouldn’t necessarily invite to the dinner table.

Some people on dating sites who met online decided it was time to share their phone number and they would get a second number so the other person wouldn’t be able to reverse search the main phone line so easily.

My primary number is precious, and I’m careful not to interrupt it with sales calls and annoying invitations.

I don’t want my life interrupted unless it’s from someone I care about. It’s time to regain some of your privacy and undisturbed life.

Click to get KURT’s CYBERGUY newsletter with quick tips, tech reviews, security alerts and simple how-to’s to make you smarter

An incoming call pops up on the smartphone.
(iStock)

How do toll-free numbers work?

When you want to get a toll-free number, you first have to choose an area code. All phone numbers, including toll-free numbers, must have an area code in order to be used. Once you select an area code, no matter which service you use, you will be provided with a list of available phone numbers belonging to that area code.

Your toll-free number will allow people to call without paying extra to the person calling the number. This allows people to reach you from far away without paying any extra fees.

Plus, it gives you an extra layer of privacy by ensuring people can reach you without giving out your personal phone number.

4 common things ALEXA can do better than you

How do I get a toll-free number?

There are various services that provide toll-free numbers to people who need one.

google voice

A graphic of the Google Voice logo.

A graphic of the Google Voice logo.
(Fox News)

Google Voice provides users with a toll-free phone number that you can receive calls on all your devices at the same time. The number works on smartphones and the web, so whether you’re on your phone, tablet or computer, you’ll be alerted when someone calls you. Some other features of Google Voice include:

• Voicemail transcription so you can read voicemails instead of listening to them
• Forward calls to any device and block spam calls
• Free local calls to any phone number in the United States at no additional cost
• International calls can be made for a per-minute fee

Download Google Voice: iOS | android

text now

Logo for the Textnow application.

Logo for the Textnow application.
(Fox News)

TextNow is an iOS application that you can download from the iPhone App Store. The app gives you a free recovery phone number to use that works just like a regular phone number. You simply select a city in the US or Canada and it will give you a new number with a unique area code. Some of the features that come with the app include:

• Change text and ringtone to whatever you want
• Access voicemail inbox
• Free calls or texts on your home Wi-Fi network
• You can buy a SIM card for 99 cents and get unlimited talk and text for $0 per month
• $8.99/month plan for 1 GB of data

Download TextNow: iOS | android

ding dong

Ding Dong brand name label.

Ding Dong brand name label.
(Fox News)

DingDong is an app that can only be found on iOS devices that offers a lot more than just a toll-free number with basic texting and calling. Some of these features include:

• Free conference calls and faxes
• Free or cheap international calls to over 200 countries
• Advanced features such as call blocking, forwarding and recording

Download Ding Dong: iOS if only

no text

Photo of the Textfree logo.

Photo of the Textfree logo.
(Fox News)

Textfree is an app available through the iOS and Google Play app stores and can be used from a smartphone, tablet or computer. It gives you a custom phone number that you can use to reach other people even if they don’t have the app themselves. Some other unique features of the app include:

• Unlimited free text messages, including sending pictures and videos
• Reliable WiFi calling, no carrier plan required
• Customize your voicemail greeting

Download TextNow: iOS | android

APPLE, GOOGLE, AMAZON & FACEBOOK ALWAYS LISTEN UNLESS YOU CHANGE THESE SETTINGS

Other ways to keep your information private

Besides having another unique number that gives you control over who is calling you, there are other ways to take control of your privacy. There are many options for preventing your personal information from falling into the wrong hands. Here are some additional safety tips you can take:

Use a VPN for Private Browsing

By making sure you have a VPN installed on your computer, you can keep your browsing private and secure. A VPN also has other benefits, such as increased connection speeds and preventing your internet service provider from tracking any activity you do online.

Head over to CyberGuy.com/VPN to read more about our top picks.

Use an encrypted email provider

You can use an encrypted email server to keep your emails private. This will prevent companies from selling your information to people who might bombard you with targeted ads, which could leave you vulnerable to phishing scams or even identity theft.

Our top picks for private and secure email providers are start mail. Their service will give you unlimited anonymous aliases that will protect you from hundreds of spam emails you receive every day. They also allow you to send password-protected messages, meaning the recipient of your email must enter a password to view your message. Most importantly, StartMail has a clean and easy-to-use interface that makes the whole experience enjoyable and safe.
Exclusive offer for CyberGuy readers: 60% discount: $23.98 for the first year ($2 per month billed annually) includes a 7-day free trial.

Head over to CyberGuy.com/Mail to read more about our review.

For more privacy tips, be sure to subscribe to the CyberGuy Report newsletter at CyberGuy.com/Newsletter.

Copyright 2023 CyberGuy.com. all rights reserved. CyberGuy.com articles and content may contain affiliate links that earn commissions on purchases made.



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