Pennsylvania Phone Number Lookup

(814) 212-5430

What are Centre County Area Codes?

Named for its central location in the state, Centre County occupies an area measuring 1,113 square miles in the middle of Pennsylvania. Its population, according to the 2010 census, was 153,990. The county seat of Centre County is the borough of Bellefonte.

Two area codes serve all of Centre County. These are area codes 814 and 582. Area codes are numeric designations for numbering plan areas (NPAs). AT&T introduced both area codes and NPAs when it created the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) in 1947. There were 86 area codes created that year to cover all of the US. The introduction of the NANP simplified call routing across North American telephone exchanges. As all carriers moved to use the same call routing system, placing long-distance calls became more reliable. In a typical 10-digit North American phone number, the area code is designated by the first three digits. It represents the geographic area where the phone number was assigned.

Area Code 814

Area code 814 is one of the original 86 area codes created in the county in 1947 and one the four originally assigned to Pennsylvania. It still covers the original area it was assigned to in 1947. All of the communities in Centre County are served by area code 814 including Bellefonte, State College, and Park Forest Village.

Area Code 582

Created in an overlay plan of the 814 NPA on October 3, 2020, area code 582 serves as an overlay of area code 814 and covers the same communities. The first phone numbers for this area code were issued on May 1, 2021.

What are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Centre County?

Most of the residents of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania still use the landline phones along with wireless phones. In a 2018 survey conducted by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics to study wireless substitution rates in the country, the result showed that 43.4% of adult residents of the state use wireless phones exclusively while 4.3% still indicated they only used landline phones for telecommunication. A little more than half of the minors in Pennsylvania have made the switch to wireless phones. About 52.5% of residents under the age of 18 confirmed that they were wireless-only phone users while 2.3% responded that they still used landline phones exclusively.

All of the national carriers as well as smaller, regional carriers provide phone services in Centre County as well as the rest of Pennsylvania. AT&T leads the pack with 95.4% coverage of the state. Verizon and T-Mobile phone networks cover 93.1% and 93% of Pennsylvania respectively. Regional carriers operating in Texas are mostly MVNOs (Mobile Virtual Network Operators) sharing network infrastructure with major regional carriers. These smaller carriers are able to offer cheaper cell phone plans by purchasing bulk network services and passing on some of the savings to their subscribers.

Residents of Centre County can also sign up for phone plans from VoIP operators. Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is a communication technology that enables the transmission of voice signals over the internet as data packets. VoIP phone services require fast internet access and are cheaper for subscribers with broadband internet services at home or work.

What are Centre County Phone Scams?

These are fraudulent schemes, involving the use of phone tools and services, perpetrated by scammers targeting residents of Centre County. Scammers often use robocalls and spam text messages to cast wide nets for potential targets. They also use caller ID spoofing and voice phishing to deceive their targets with the aim of defrauding them and stealing confidential personal information.

To fight scammers and avoid phone scams, residents of Centre County need phone tools such as call blocking and reverse phone number lookup. These help them spot scammers and block them before they can cause harm. Along with these tools, residents should know about the most prevalent phone scams in their communities. The most common telephone frauds in Pennsylvania include credit card scams, foreign lottery scams, grandparent scams, and warrant scams.

What are Centre County Credit Card Scams?

A credit card scam starts with a call to the target informing them that a suspicious transaction on their credit card has been flagged. The caller claims to be from the fraud department of the company that issued the card and may even provide the victim’s credit card number to earn their trust. Then, the scammer asks that the victim call out the numbers on their cards, including the 3-digit PIN, at the back of the card. They claim to require this step to verify that the holder is in possession of their credit card. With the PIN, the scammer can make huge purchases on the victim’s card and ruin their credit score.

Residents of Centre County should be wary of strangers claiming they work for credit card companies and demanding confidential information. If you receive such a call, run the caller’s number through a free reverse phone lookup to identify them and see whether the number is that of the credit card company. Even if your phone’s caller ID shows an incoming call coming from VISA or MasterCard, do not trust the caller until you can verify their identity and never provide your credit card information on the phone.

What are Centre County Foreign Lottery Scams?

In these scams, fraudsters call their victims to congratulate them on winning foreign lotteries they have never heard of and did not enter. They claim their targets have won huge sums of money but need to pay for taxes and other expenses before claiming their winnings. Lottery scams are a form of advance fee frauds. Residents of Centre County should know that it is illegal to ask a lottery winner to pay before receiving their prizes. A quick phone number lookup will reveal that the caller does not represent the organizers of the claimed lottery or that they do not live in the country where the lottery was held. In some cases, scammers reference bogus lotteries altogether.

What are Centre County Grandparent Scams?

Also known as emergency scams because fraudsters aim to defraud their victims by claiming to need emergency help. Usually targeting elderly residents, hence the name, grandparent scams often begin with calls from scammers impersonating their victims’ loved ones, usually their grandchildren. These impostors ask for immediate financial help to get out of dire situations. They may claim to need the money to get out of jail, come home from foreign lands, pay for legal bills, or pay hospital bills. They beg their victims to keep their pleas for help secret from other family members.

Grandparent scams are easy to spot and foil. A quick suspicious phone number lookup can mask the caller as an impostor and a scammer. Residents of Centre County should talk to their elderly relatives and instruct them on how to proceed if they receive such calls. Targets of these scams should call their loved ones directly or other family members to confirm the stories they heard.

What are Centre County Warrant Scams?

These are also impostor scams. In these cases, fraudsters impersonate law enforcement officers. When calling their victims, they claim there are warrants out for their arrest and that there are law enforcement agents on the way to arrest them. These fraudsters then demand that their victims pay certain amounts to avoid the embarrassment and inconvenience of getting arrested. If contacted in this way, hang up the call and call the local law enforcement to ask if there is a warrant out for your arrest. To foil warrant scams, use reverse phone lookup to investigate the caller and determine if their numbers were the official phone numbers of the local law enforcement agency they claim to represent.

What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?

Robocalls are automated phone calls placed to large numbers of phone users and delivering pre-recorded messages. Telemarketers, political campaigns, and public institutions authorized to send out public service announcements use robocalls routinely and set them up using auto-dialers. The ease, low cost, and effectiveness of robocalls as mass communication tools are features that make them appealing to scammers. Fraudsters use robocalls to cast wide nets when looking for targets for their scams.

Like robocalls, spam calls are also bulk calls placed to large groups of users. However, spam calls may be placed by human agents delivering similar messages to long lists of contacts. For most residents of Centre County, the number of robocalls and spam calls received keeps growing. Some phone users already reported they receive more of these unwanted, unsolicited calls than actual calls from friends, family members, co-workers, and other genuine callers. To stop receiving so many robocalls and spam calls, residents of Centre County should consider the following steps:

  • Hang up a call as soon as you realize it is a robocall or spam call
  • Disregard instructions given during such calls on steps to take to remove your number from their call lists. Such prompts only serve to confirm active lines. Scammers and spammers pass around lists of such confirmed numbers
  • Do not trust your caller ID to truly identify callers. Scammers and spammers often use caller ID spoofing to mask their true identities and assume the identities of trusted individuals and organizations
  • Let calls from unrecognized numbers go to voicemail where you can listen to messages left and determine which ones to return
  • Set up your phone to block calls from certain numbers or all unknown numbers. You can also ask your carrier for call blocking and call filtering options or download a well-reviewed call blocking app from your phone’s app store
  • Look up unknown callers with reverse phone number search tools. These can help identify scammers, spammers, and stalkers and provide useful information for police reports
  • Sign up to the National Do Not Call Registry and the Pennsylvania Do Not Call List. Doing so will stop unwanted telemarketing calls. While dishonest telemarketers and scammers do not obey the rules of these registries, you can report robocalls and spam calls received after a month of registering your phone number

How to Spot and Report Centre County Phone Scams

Scammers stay one step ahead of law enforcement and their victims by tweaking their tactics. However, their goals remain defrauding their targets and stealing confidential personal information. Therefore, all phone scams share certain traits. To spot phone scams, residents of Centre County should look out for the following signs:

  • Callers using threats to obtain compliance - scammers impersonating authority figures often resort to threatening their targets to get them to send money or release personal information. They may threaten their victims with arrest, prosecution, tax audit, deportation, or withdrawal of driver’s, business, or professional license
  • Callers employing aggressive sales tactics - fraudsters perpetrating consumer scams know the longer their targets take to consider their offers, the more likely they will see they are scams. To give victims little time to think about these bogus offers, scammers pressure them to act quickly by claiming their no-risk, high-yield offers are only available for a limited time or offering even steeper discounts for those signing up immediately
  • Callers demanding payment by unofficial means - government agencies, state and county courts, the IRS, utility companies, charities, and legitimate private enterprises do not ask people to make payments by cash, gift cards, prepaid debit cards, wire transfers, or cryptocurrencies
  • Callers cannot providing supporting documents - scammers are usually unable to provide written documentation supporting their claims or verifying their identities

After spotting phone scams from these signs, residents of Centre County can seek to investigate further by unmasking scammers using reverse phone number search. Rather than take action, they should report fraudulent individuals and businesses to the right authorities. Centre County residents can report phone scams to the following agencies:

  • The Bureau of Consumer Protection of the Office of the Attorney General of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania - the state’s consumer protection agency safeguards residents against dishonest business practices and telemarketers disregarding the rules of the state’s No Call List. Residents can file consumer complaints online
  • The Centre County Sheriff’s Department - the chief law enforcement agency in the county protects residents from all crimes including phone scams. Report a phone scam, especially one involving an impostor impersonating law enforcement, to the Sheriff’s Department by calling (814) 355-6803
  • The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) - this federal agency protects American consumers against unfair and deceptive business practices. It investigates consumer scams and prosecutes scammers targeting consumers. Report a scam involving a consumer transaction to the FTC by calling (877) 382-4357 or submitting a fraud complaint online
  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) - the FCC regulates all communication in the country. Its authority covers telecommunication providers and services. Therefore, telephone frauds can be reported to the FCC. The agency also receives complaints of illegal robocalls, spam calls, caller ID spoofing, and phishing. Submit a complaint of a scam involving any of these tools to the FCC’s Consumer Complaint Center