Toll restriction or toll denial is a telephony feature offered by a telephone company that configures a telephone line to be configured so that it is impossible to originate long-distance calls from that line, or to accept charges reversed to the telephone number by other parties. Such lines usually allow calls to be made to no-charge numbers locally and toll-free so that customers can still initialte local and some long-distance calls.
Most commonly this restriction is applied at the request of the owner of the premises, who does not wish to be subject to unlimited liability for costly unauthorised calls made by others at the site. Restriction of calls to overseas or premium-rate telephone numbers are common options on some systems, such as voice over IP. Private branch exchange clients are often able to configure toll restriction on a per-extension basis through the local PBX, either blocking all trunk calls or requiring that a numeric password be dialled to complete the call.
Toll restriction features are categorized in a set of seven classes, Class 0 through Class 6.
Telephone companies may sometimes require high-risk-account customers, or those requiring basic phone service for security and health reasons, to accept toll restriction.
A telephone card, calling card or phonecard for short, is a credit card-size plastic or paper card, used to pay for telephone services. It is not necessary to have the physical card except with a stored-value system; knowledge of the access telephone number to dial and the PIN is sufficient. Standard cards which can be purchased and used without any sort of account facility give a fixed amount of credit and are discarded when used up; rechargeable cards can be topped up, or collect payment in arrears. The system for payment and the way in which the card is used to place a telephone call vary from card to card.
Direct distance dialing (DDD) is a telecommunication service feature in North America by which a caller may, without operator assistance, call any other user outside the local calling area. Direct dialing by subscribers typically requires extra digits to be dialed as prefixes to the directory telephone number of the destination. International Direct Distance Dialing (IDDD) extends the system beyond the geographic boundaries of the North American Numbering Plan (NANP).
In telephony, the term local call has the following meanings:
Wide Area Telephone Service (WATS) was a flat-rate long-distance service for customer dial-type telecommunications in the service areas of the North American Numbering Plan (NANP).
Caller identification is a telephone service, available in analog and digital telephone systems, including voice over IP (VoIP), that transmits a caller's telephone number to the called party's telephone equipment when the call is being set up. The caller ID service may include the transmission of a name associated with the calling telephone number, in a service called Calling Name Presentation (CNAM). The service was first defined in 1993 in International Telecommunication Union – Telecommunication Standardization Sector (ITU-T) Recommendation Q.731.3.
A blue box is an electronic device that produces tones used to generate the in-band signaling tones formerly used within the North American long-distance telephone network to send line status and called number information over voice circuits. This allowed an illicit user, referred to as a "phreaker", to place long-distance calls, without using the network's user facilities, that would be billed to another number or dismissed entirely as an incomplete call. A number of similar "color boxes" were also created to control other aspects of the phone network.
The North American Numbering Plan (NANP) is a telephone numbering plan for twenty-five regions in twenty countries, primarily in North America and the Caribbean. This group is historically known as World Zone 1 and has the telephone country code 1. Some North American countries, most notably Mexico, do not participate in the NANP.
A toll-free telephone number or freephone number is a telephone number that is billed for all arriving calls. For the calling party, a call to a toll-free number from a landline is free of charge. A toll-free number is identified by a dialing prefix similar to an area code. The specific service access varies by country.
Call forwarding, or call diversion, is a telephony feature of all telephone switching systems which redirects a telephone call to another destination, which may be, for example, a mobile or another telephone number where the desired called party is available. Call forwarding was invented by Ernest J. Bonanno. In North America, the forwarded line usually rings once to remind the customer using call forwarding that the call is being redirected. More consistently, the forwarded line indicates its condition by stutter dial tone. Call forwarding typically can redirect incoming calls to any other domestic telephone number, but the owner of the forwarded line must pay any toll charges for forwarded calls. Call forwarding is often enabled by dialing *72 followed by the telephone number to which calls should be forwarded. Once someone answers, call forwarding is in effect. If no one answers or the line is busy, the dialing sequence must be repeated to effect call forwarding. Call forwarding is disabled by dialing *73. This feature requires a subscription from the telephone company. Also available in some areas is Remote Access to call forwarding, which permit the control over call forwarding from telephones other than the subscriber's telephone. VOIP and cable telephone systems also allow call forwarding to be set up and directed via their web portals.
Phone fraud, or more generally communications fraud, is the use of telecommunications products or services with the intention of illegally acquiring money from, or failing to pay, a telecommunication company or its customers.
In telecommunications, a long-distance call (U.S.) or trunk call is a telephone call made to a location outside a defined local calling area. Long-distance calls are typically charged a higher billing rate than local calls. The term is not necessarily synonymous with placing calls to another telephone area code.
The dialling plan for mobile networks and new landline operators is closed; all subscriber numbers must be dialled in full. For landline numbers starting with 02, the dialling plan used to be open; the trunk digit and area code could be omitted if the caller was in the same area code as the callee. However, starting May 3, 2008, all landline numbers must be dialled in full.
The Brazilian telephone numbering plan uses a two-digit area code plus eight-digit local phone numbers for landlines and nine digits for mobile lines. Public utility services use short phone numbers, always starting with 1.
Phone sex is a conversation between two or more people by means of the telephone which is sexually explicit and is intended to provoke sexual arousal in one or more participants. As a practice between individuals temporarily separated, it is as old as dial telephones, on which no operator could eavesdrop. In the later 20th century businesses emerged offering, for a fee, sexual conversations with a phone sex worker.
Foreign exchange service (FX) is an access service in a telecommunications network in which a telephone in a given exchange area is connected, via a private line, as opposed to a switched line, to a telephone exchange or central office in another exchange area, called the foreign exchange, rather than the local exchange area where the subscriber station equipment is located.
ILD Teleservices, is a clearing house for LEC billing and alternative payment options, such as e-checks, ACH and micro payments. ILD performs payment processing services for communications companies, digital content providers, and other online vendors in North America. Founded in 1996, the company is headquartered in Ponte Vedra, Florida. In recent years, the company has been the subject of many consumer complaints as well as legal action brought by at least two states and the Federal Trade Commission. In 2003, ILD settled with the Federal Trade Commission.
The original North American area codes were established by the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T) in 1947, following the demonstration of regional Operator Toll Dialing during the World War II period. The program had the goal of speeding the connecting times for long-distance calling by eliminating intermediary telephone operators. Expanding this technology for national use required a comprehensive and universal, continent-wide telephone numbering plan.
Toll-free telephone numbers in the North American Numbering Plan have the area code prefix 800, 833, 844, 855, 866, 877, and 888. Additionally, area codes 822, 880 through 887, and 889 are reserved for toll-free use in the future. 811 is excluded because it is a special dialing code in the group NXX for various other purposes.
PSTN network topology is the switching network topology of a telephone network connected to the public switched telephone network (PSTN).
The General Toll Switching Plan was a systematic nationwide effort by the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T) of organizing the telephone toll circuits and cable routes of the nation, and of streamlining the operating principles and technical infrastructure for connecting long-distance telephone calls in North America. This involved the design of a hierarchical system of toll-switching centers, a process that had found substantial maturity by 1929. The switching plan was principally operated by the Long Lines division of the Bell System in cooperation with independent telephone companies under the decree of the Kingsbury Commitment, reached with the United States government in 1913. The General Toll Switching Plan was a system manually operated by long-distance telephone operators. It was the forerunner of an automated system called Nationwide Operator Toll Dialing that was begun in 1943, which eventually led to Direct Distance Dialing (DDD) within the framework of the North American Numbering Plan decades later.