Asterisk 101 : How to troll telemarketers (aka automatically send hidden Caller ID to a waiting music forever)

If like me you get tons of telemarketers calls, there’s an easy way to get rid of them with a quick Asterisk hack. The following Asterisk configuration snippet will immediately send any hidden caller ID (99% telemarketers, and I have a general policy of not picking up the phone for hidden caller ID anyway) to a holding music making them waste money and time…

This snippet is to place into the extension.conf file :

[incoming] ; incoming calls
exten => s,1,GotoIf($["${CALLERID(NUM)}" = "anonymous"] ? 10) 
exten => s,2,Dial(SIP/phone1&SIP/phone2,10)
exten => s,3,Congestion()
exten => s,4,Hangup()
exten => s,10,Answer
exten => s,11,Wait(1)
exten => s,12,MusicOnHold(default)
exten => s,13,Hangup

This block will check for the NUMber information of the Caller ID and if it is “anonymous”, it will send it to the step 10 which will pick up the call and start the holding music. If the Caller ID is not “anonymous”, it will ring 2 SIP phones for 10 secs, and if no one picks those, send it to congestion mode.

That’s all !

Edit : On a second thought, I think I’ll change that to have Asterisk to pick up the call and let the caller leave a message. That’s still going to catch those telemarketers (waste time & money), while giving a chance to legit callers to speak their message.

9 thoughts on “Asterisk 101 : How to troll telemarketers (aka automatically send hidden Caller ID to a waiting music forever)”

  1. Love it! I do this too. I have them go to All representatives are busy, please wait, your call is very important to us, you are next in the queue straight to Forever Rick Roll! p.s. Great blog, your tag cloud looks very similar to mine. Please stop by and have a look sometime.

  2. I just write telemarketers numbers on so other people can find out who these telemarketers are.

    Besides I use my cell phone 99% of the time so I can’t really use asterisk all of the time anyway.

  3. Do telemarketers ever exist anymore? Those are bill collectors, quit being a bum and pay your bills…

  4. @Andrew Fink : Very interesting blog ! I’ve subscribed in my RSS reader 🙂

    @jamie : No way, it’s not ready for that just yet ! lol

    @James Von DeAngelo : I’d be glad to do that … but they mostly (like in 99.9% !) call with a hidden number.

    @shawn, @guidotg : Nope. They call to “assist me” to pay less taxes, or to make me pay for solar panels … And I always pay my bills 🙂

    Thanks to all for your visit !


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