The first commercially available cell phone arrived in 1983. As technology has moved on the world has seen flip phones, touch screens, and now foldable smartphones. There were around 15 billion mobile devices of all manners operating in 2021. And the average adult makes around 5 calls a day from their cell phones.
Emergency services receive more calls than perhaps any other single entity. More than 240 million calls a year are made to 911. This equates to something like 600,000 calls every single day, and all of them are recorded. This is done to improve call handling and to gather possible evidence, among other reasons.
Of course, phones aren’t just made for calls, they can be used for SMS and electronic messaging through What’s App, Messenger, or a number of other services. These messages are generally recorded automatically and can provide useful references later on. But, what about audio calls, why don’t people record these? Could there be some significant benefits to recording all or some of your calls?
Firstly, is it legal to record phone calls?
Recording anyone without their permission can put you in a tricky position as far as the law is concerned. For instance, you can make video recordings in your home without gaining consent from the individuals being filmed. But, only in certain situations. It is illegal to film anyone where privacy could be reasonably expected, such as in a bathroom.
Recording conversations and voice calls come under federal and state laws. The Wiretap Act of 1960 states that it is illegal to record a conversation via a telephone without consent if the other party could reasonably expect privacy.
There are, though, loopholes to this law. A legally binding order can be made to record phone calls and communications. And more pertinently to you, there is the one-party law.
In the majority of the US, a phone call can be recorded if one party has given consent. As long as you are one of the parties in the phone call, you can legally record the conversation. However, 11 states have the two-party rule in effect which means both parties must consent to the recording, so you need to check your local legislation.
Why would anyone want to record calls?
Recording phone calls isn’t difficult. You can simply download an app to record phone calls and save the audio files for later use. Why you want to do this may be to do with health reasons, business practices, evidence gathering, or for other reasons.
Businesses need to remain compliant, and any good enterprise will strive to improve customer service. These businesses will often monitor and record phone conversations with customers, but normally this will always be made clear.
Recording phone calls could help a patient with dementia. Someone with cognitive difficulties could benefit from recorded phone calls to play back later.
What benefits does call recording give you?
As mentioned previously, one of the ways to help dementia patients is to set up their phones to record calls. Making notes and recordings can help when recollection is difficult. Recording calls can help in many other areas too.
- Team training
- Customer service
- Customer dispute resolution
- Evidence gathering
- Threatening behavior
- Employer issues
- Parental control
Phone call recordings can be used to help improve employees’ productivity, and improve effectiveness when dealing with clients. These recordings are also very useful in customer disputes when trying to resolve an issue.
In someone’s personal life, recording calls can show evidence of threatening behavior from someone or abusive phone calls. It can also help if a boss is being unreasonable or making threats that you want to document and report to HR.
Anxiety affects the body in many ways, and workplace stress affects over 800,000 workers in the US. If you are the victim of unreasonable behavior, then you could record the evidence.
Recording calls can also just be a better way to gather information for later than trying to scribble notes while still connected to a live conversation.
How can you record your calls?
Small, medium and large businesses have many options for call recording solutions. The software can be installed within a business to observe and record communications. This includes all incoming and outgoing phone calls.
For much smaller operators, sole traders, or individuals, then the solution is much less costly and complicated. There are plenty of apps available for download to mobile devices that can record any call.
Most of these apps are Android and iOS compatible and are available on the appropriate app store. Many of them can also work across social media platforms and record audio calls through any of these as well as direct cell phone calls.
Recording phone calls could help a business or an individual in a multitude of ways. For anyone with memory problems, a recorded call saves the embarrassment of having to make a repeat phone call. Businesses can improve call efficiency and customer services, and resolve disputes easier.
Those people suffering from abusive calls, or workplace issues, can gather evidence to present to legal authorities or HR. As long as you record conversations within your state law there should be no issues.