How to Engage Spam Calls

  • Shaibana Sherafudheen
  • Published: NOVEMBER 28, 2018
How to Engage Spam Calls

There is literally no dearth to the multiple calls in a day one receives from telemarketers. At the beginning of this year itself, there were about more than 3 billion robocalls placed in the US. It would be a futile exercise to block these calls as most of these calls are spoofed to trick you into answering. So blocking the numbers are just a prompt to instruct their systems to use a different number and most of us will have about a hundred blocked numbers in our list. Here is where Lenny comes in.

To those least familiar, Lenny is a chatbot that was created almost three decades ago by a software developer who got sick of these calls day after day. He designed an automated message system to troll these telemarketers and scam callers.

It is said that the bot has been designed to simulate telemarketers’ worst nightmare. It is said to resemble a decrepit aged man’s voice who is slightly deaf. It has some 16 pre-recorded phrases, which makes the bot sound authentic and natural.

Initially, the talks are phrased in a manner to hook the caller into throwing their sales pitch. This would cover the first four parts of the conversation. The other twelve parts of the speeches have been framed to keep the telemarketing executive engaged without entering into any commitments. After the recordings, the voice-detection algorithm listens for about 1.5 secs it then pauses in between the conversation to start the next message. These twelve messages are then iterated till the caller hangs up.

Lenny’s personality is a guise to make himself appear like an easily confused and a forgetful person. One of his famous calls has him stringing on a Microsoft scammer for over 11 minutes.

About 75% telemarketers have been duped for about two minutes and in some cases, it has extended to about an hour.

Although Lenny has been in vogue for almost 10 years it would be an expensive affair to avail it outside the United States.

Shaibana Sherafudheen Research Analyst
  • Last updated: Dec 4, 2018 16:05 IST
  • TOPICS: Around The World   Technology  

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