Before caller ID, if you wanted to call someone without them knowing you were at the other end, it was easy. But unless you can set up a fake caller ID number, anonymous calls are no longer an option. But some have found a way to spoof caller ID. If you're the recipient of those calls, though, it isn't so much fun, especially if the calls are disturbing or annoying. Unfortunately, tracing a spoof call can be complicated, but it's worth a try.
Tracing a Spoofed Phone Number
If you get a call that appears to be from a fake caller ID number, your first step should be to call the number. This will tell you whether the caller information displayed on your screen belongs to the person who actually called you. If the number has, indeed, been spoofed, input the spoof caller ID number into a Google search and see what comes up. If it's a number that's commonly been connected to spoof calls, you'll likely see that it's been reported by others. This will help you see what the caller is up to if, for instance, it's a telemarketer simply trying to sell you something.
Tracing Using an App
There are apps available that will help you get better control over nuisance calls. They're the closest you'll likely get to tracing a spoofed phone number. When possible, apps like TrapCall will show the real name and number behind the spoof caller ID number. Even when they can't pull up the number, though, they can still be useful. These apps promise to block many known spam numbers so they can't even make it through to your phone in the first place. If you're getting repeated calls from a wide variety of spoof numbers, this option may be the best one for you.
Contact the Authorities
Although you'll be limited in tracing a spoofed phone number, the police aren't. If the calls you're getting from a fake caller ID number go beyond being annoying, it might be time to bring in local authorities. If it's coming from the same number, you can simply block it, but spoofers make that difficult. Make sure your number is registered on the Do Not Call List and file a complaint on repeat offenders, if you know them, through the FCC website. If the calls are of a dangerous or disturbing nature, gather as much documentation as possible and take it to the local police.