What are Marathon County Area Codes?
Area codes are the first three-digit numbers of standard 10-digit phone numbers. Also known as NPA (Numbering Plan Area) codes, area codes were created in 1947 as part of the North American Numbering Plan (NANP). Phone users use area codes to identify the origin and destination of calls. In Wisconsin, the Public Service Commission (PSC) is tasked with implementing and approving new area codes when old ones have been exhausted.
Two area codes are currently active in Marathon County. These are:
Area Code 715
Area Code 534
Area code 534 is an overlay area code created for Wisconsin in 2010. Overlay area codes are introduced after phone numbers have become exhausted. Marathon County communities covered by area code 534 include the Cities of Wausau and Mosinee.
What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Marathon County?
The four primary network providers in Marathon County deliver good coverage in the county. These are AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile. Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) serve as alternatives to the four main networks. The alternative phone carriers provide cheaper services but depend on the major networks for their network facilities. Network coverage in Marathon County is excellent except for areas with varying landscapes. In Marathon County, Verizon offers the best coverage with 98%. AT&T provides 84% network coverage, while T-Mobile has 78% coverage. Sprint offers the least network with 68% coverage.
According to the National Center of Health Statistics, wireless telephone users in Marathon County and other parts of Wisconsin are more than landline users. This is seen in a 2018 survey published by the department. The report revealed that 51.4% of adults in Wisconsin use only cell phones, while 5.4% use landlines only. The survey also shows that 62.3% of minors use wireless telephones only, while 1.5% use landlines only.
Residents in Wisconsin mostly use Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services to make phone calls. VoIP services are less expensive and more versatile. Also, they require the use of broadband internet access, making them faster than traditional lines. VoIP users can use this functionality to carry out direct inbound dialing, web conferencing, and other functions.
What are Marathon County Phone Scams?
These are scams perpetrated by con artists aiming to defraud residents of Marathon County. Phone scammers deceive their targets by making dubious claims. Unsuspecting residents who fall victim to these scams give out financial and personal details to fraudsters. Residents can avoid falling victim to phone scams if they understand the techniques that scammers use. Many fraudsters use innovative technologies that enable anonymity or fake caller ID. Individuals can identify spoofed calls by using reverse phone lookup services or area code lookups.
Examples of phone scams in Marathon County include:
What are Marathon County Jury Duty Scams?
Jury duty scams in Marathon County are carried out by fraudsters threatening to prosecute individuals for failing to comply with jury service. Most jury service scams are carried out through phone calls or emails. Some scammers may use jail threats to persuade their targets to give out their social security numbers or driver's licenses. Other con artists may threaten to arrest individuals if they do not pay fines for not complying with jury duty.
Generally, individuals are required to take jury duties seriously since they are vital civic responsibilities. Nonetheless, federal or state courts do not request personal information over the phone or through emails. Personal data obtained through this means are often used for identity theft. Most scammers ask for payments of the supposed fines to Bitcoin wallets or gift cards. These payment methods are common with scammers to ensure they are not traced. It is best to notify the Clerk of Courts in Marathon County by calling 715-261-1300.
What are Marathon County Grandparents Scams?
Grandparent scams target aged persons in Marathon County. Con artists involved in these scams most times first obtain some background information on their targets on social media before the call. With this information, the imposters make up false claims to defraud their victims. Sometimes, they make their fraudulent acts look real by getting other people to pretend to be law enforcement officers or lawyers. Like every other scam, the fraudsters request secrecy and immediate payments through untraceable means like bitcoins, gift cards, and wire transfers.
In other types of grandparent scams, scam callers impersonate Medicare officials. They promise free Medicare supplies and tools to aged persons in the county. In return, they request Medicare numbers used to claim the Medicare benefits of their targets. Scammers who prey on Medicare patients are often well-informed and sympathetic, making their deceptions look genuine. Aged persons in Marathon County are often advised to:
- Refrain from taking action right away.
- Ignore all urgent requests and hang up the call.
- Speak with other relatives to confirm the claims.
- Verify who called by using suspicious phone number lookup applications.
It is crucial to contact the Bureau of Consumer Protection or dial (800) 422-7128 to report the incident. Victims of grandparent scams can help other individuals avoid being scammed by filing complaints to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
What are Marathon County IRS Imposter Scams?
IRS imposter scams are widespread in Marathon County. Con artists impersonating IRS (Internal Revenue Service) agents inform their targets of unpaid taxes. They threaten to arrest, deport, sue, or revoke licenses if individuals refuse to pay taxes immediately. Some scammers try to authenticate their claims by calling out the last digits of their targets' social security numbers. Afterward, they request tax payment via gift cards or cryptocurrency.
In response to these fraudulent activities, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) has published several warnings to residents. According to a report published by the DATCP, genuine IRS agents:
- Will contact residents by mail.
- Do not ask for payment through cryptocurrency wallets, wire transfers, and gift cards.
- Do not threaten taxpayers.
- Do not request social security numbers and credit card details.
If any of these occur over the phone, county residents are advised to hang up the call and contact the Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-800-422-7128. Alternatively, call the IRS on (800) 829-1040. Victims may also report IRS imposter scams to the FTC.
What are Marathon County Travel Scams?
In Marathon County travel scams, individuals receive phone calls from dubious persons or fake travel agencies claiming they won free vacations. The scammers often request service fees upfront or processing fees into gift cards or bitcoin. Some fraudsters may ask for credit card details or social security numbers claiming to confirm individuals' eligibility.
Individuals should look up travel tips provided by the Wisconsin Bureau of Consumer Protection. Also, recipients of these calls are advised to refrain from giving out their personal or financial details over the phone. They can use suspicious phone number lookup services to find the identity of callers and verify the claims of the travel agencies on the Better Business Bureau website.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Robocalls are automated calls used by telemarketers, politicians, and non-profit organizations to send pre-recorded messages to phone users. Spam calls are unsolicited calls with redundant messages. According to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), telemarketers can send robocalls only to persons who have given their permission. On the other hand, politicians and non-profit organizations providing valuable information may use robocalls without individuals' consent.
Fraudsters use robocalls to carry out fraudulent activities because robocalls keep them anonymous. Such anonymity allows them to trick innocent citizens into giving out their personal information. County residents are advised to download free reverse phone lookup apps. With such apps, individuals can determine whether certain robocalls are from fraudsters or approved agencies.
If the robocallers ask for payments via bitcoins or request personal details, you should;
- Terminate the call immediately. Calls that ask phone users to follow prompts should also be terminated.
- Decline requests for Social Security numbers (SSN), bank details, passwords, or other personal information.
- Find out who called by using phone number search tools.
- Block phone numbers of robocalls identified as scammers.
- Report frauds with the FTC by calling 1-(888)-382-1222 or filing complaints online.
- Register phone numbers with the Wisconsin Do Not Call Registry or the National Do Not Call Registry (DNCR) to avoid receiving spam calls and robocalls.
How to Spot and Report Marathon County Phone Scams?
Scammers always find new ways to defraud residents and business entities. With the recent innovations in the telecommunication industry, phone scams are now as common as internet frauds. However, being educated on these scams can help residents avoid becoming victims of scam calls. It is also vital to know who a phone number is registered to and other call details. This can be done using a free reverse phone lookup service to conduct a free phone number search by name or address. Some warning signs of scammers are:
- Aggressive and persuasive techniques. Fraudsters need targets to make transactions immediately. As such, they threaten to arrest or revoke individuals' licenses.
- Unconventional payment channels. Scammers often use payment systems like gift cards and cryptocurrency wallets since they are difficult to trace. Usually, government agencies do not accept such payments.
- Requests for personal details. Scammers often request personal information like social security numbers and driver's licenses for identity theft. Government agencies do not ask for personal or bank details.
- Scammers make huge promises to lure targets into making payments upfront.
If you spot any of the red flags mentioned above, hang up and use a reverse cell phone lookup application to figure out who the caller is. Afterward, report fraudulent activities to any of the public agencies listed below:
Marathon County District Attorney: The Victim Witness Program created by the DA's office provides emotional support for crime victims. Victims of scam calls can call the director of the program on (715) 261-1111. The line is available on weekdays between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Marathon County Sheriff's Office (MCSO): As the county's primary law enforcement agency, scam victims can report any fraudulent activities to the General Investigation Unit of the department. Contact the Sheriff's office at:
Marathon County Courthouse
500 Forest Street
Wausau, WI 54403
Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade ?and Consumer Protection (DATCP): County residents can call the Consumer Protection Hotline on (800) 422-7128 or send emails to the department. Alternatively, individuals can file online complaints or fill consumer complaints forms and send them to:
Bureau of Consumer Protection
2811 Agriculture Drive
PO Box 8911
Madison WI 53708-8911
Federal Trade Commission (FTC): The FTC is a federal agency tasked with protecting citizens from all types of scams. US citizens can reduce the chances of being targets of phone scams by registering their phone numbers with the National Do Not Call Registry. Also, it is essential to report scam calls to the FTC to help others learn more about scams.
Federal Communications Commission (FCC): The FCC regulates interstate and international communications. The agency is also tasked with protecting consumers from fraudulent robocalls and all types of phone scams. Phone scam victims can file complaints with the FCC. More information on how to avoid unwanted robocalls and phone scams is available on the FCC website.