Story behind Red-Number calls killing receivers in Assam


During the last few days, entire Assam has been swept apart with the news of ghostly red phone numbers causing brain hemorrhage and killing people. There have been several reported incidents where anonymous calls from different numbers (numbers known so far are 7888308001, 9316048121, 9876266211, 9888854137 and 9876715687) has caused the receiver hemorrhage, requiring immediate medical attention. The news has spread like wildfire, first among the residents in the Guwahati followed by other major towns and reaching even the most rural villages, with many forwarding the stories to their friends, families and colleagues via text messages, warning them not to receive calls which will appear in a red color.
Times of Assam have done a deep study of this news and have come to some eye-widening facts.

What is Rumor and what can be true:
First of all, the news that the calls from the listed killing numbers appears in Red colour is nothing more than a rumour. For example, a black and white (non coloured) mobile phone can never display anything in colour, leave alone a number. This is technically impossible. Similarly, the word of mouth that “as soon as you answer your phone blood comes out of your mouth, nose and ears and you die” can only be partially true.

While some experts are seen laughing this news off stating that the alleged hemorrhage due to high frequency has no technical basis and that this cannot possibly be done from mobile to mobile calling, we have found that a high frequency wave can be emitted if calls are made from VoIP phones (using internet). Since the hyped numbers are found to untraceable, it is evident that these calls are indeed made from VoIP calling. And the high frequency pitch that’s radiated into the phone during the calls causes a huge high frequency noise, which in turn may lead to ears bleeding. This ear bleed can be fatal at times and this is what has struck the panic button in Assam.

The Inside Story:
Times of Assam have found several evidences that all these calls are being targeted only to one particular brand of mobile handsets (Nokia) and so there is reason to believe that this entire hysteria is driven by miscreants with a strong market and business motive. With this the first question that would come to our readers mind is how do these killer-callers know which handset is being used by the person being called. The answer is, – misuse of the TRAI regulation act of April, 2009.  As per this act, every cellular company is supposed to log the IMEI code of the mobile handset every time the owner of the handset makes a call. For example, if person A uses ten different SIM cards from one single mobile handset for criminal reasons, the police can still trace him by checking IMEI code of the mobile handset, which is saved in the logs of the cellular companies calling database. This is in fact the same way the famous Munin Singh Lahkar murder case was solved by then SDPO of Rangiya, Anand Prakash Tiwari (IPS).

The next question to arise in our readers is how the miscreants causing these death-calls have accessed the critical information of mobile numbers and IMEI Code data. The answer to this is, – these database is sold by several cellular service providers legally or illegally for various purpose, especially to telemarketers, banks (example: calls asking for purchasing credit cards), etc.

This news is actually not new, a simpler version of it having first appeared in Nigeria in July 2004. A variant warning specifically of phone calls from red numbers first surfaced in Pakistan in 2007, subsequently migrating throughout the Middle East, Malaysia in 2008, across African continent with a rumour erupting in Egypt last year claiming that at least one person had suffered a brain hemorrhage and died after receiving a mysterious text message from “unknown foreign quarters.” Even different cities and states of India have already been affected by these calls, the most recent being probably Nagpur.

Appeal from Times of Assam:
It is time the officials and the security departments did some high level checks and investigation to catch and punish the culprits playing with innocent lives for capitalistic gains. When the government officials can trace down and arrest uncountable youth for receiving calls from Militants, we can surely expect some high-voltage steps from Government to ensure that this issue is closed, once and for all. Or are we asking too much?

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Story behind Red-Number calls killing receivers in Assam

By: Priyankan Goswami Read time: 4 min