What are Horry County Area Codes?
An area code refers to a three-digit number that identifies the telephone service area within a specific geographic region. They were introduced in 1947 by the North American Numbering Plan (NANP) to simplify the processes involved in making long-distance phone calls. An area code identifies a geographic region as a Numbering Plan Area (NPA) and reveals the location from which a phone call originates. The Public Service Commission (PSC) is charged with the responsibility of implementing and maintaining area codes in South Carolina, including Horry County.
Currently, only two area codes cover Horry County.
Area Code 843
Area code 843 serves the eastern part of South Carolina, including Horry County. It became operational in 1998 after it was split from the 803 NPA. Some of the cities Area Code 843 covers in Horry County are Aynor, Galivents Ferry, Conway, and Little River. Others include Green Sea, Murrells Inlet, Longs, Loris, Myrtle Beach, Nichols, and North Myrtle Beach.
Area Code 854
Area code 854 was introduced as the NANP overlay code for 843 in 2015. The 854 NPA serves the same locations as area code 843.
What Are the Best Cell Phone Plans in Horry County?
The best network providers in Horry County are AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, and Sprint. Verizon offers the best network service in Conway, with a coverage of almost 100%. It is one of the most preferred networks in Horry County. AT&T has a spread of 86% in Conway, while T-Mobile covers 66% of the city.
The National Center for Health Statistics Survey in 2019 revealed that 55.7% of adults in South Carolina used wireless phones solely for telephony services. About 4.9% of them still used landline phones. Among the under-18 population, those that had adopted wireless-only services made up 67.2%, while only 1.9% used landline phones as their sole telephony devices. These statistics revealed that wireless telephone services are predominant in South Carolina.
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) offers Horry County an alternative means to telephony. It allows residents to make phone calls using high-speed internet connections rather than the standard phone lines. VoIP telephony service is more affordable than what regular phone services offer, and users can make calls anytime and anywhere, provided there are internet connections.
What are Horry County Phone Scams?
Horry County phone scams are deceptive acts that use telecommunications services to steal money and obtain information from Horry County residents. Performing reverse phone number lookups is one of several ways to identify scammers. The Horry County Sheriff's Office warns telephone users to be wary of fraudsters to avoid falling victim to phone scams. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) provides consumer protection against phone scams. Some of the most common phone scams in Horry County are:
What are Law Enforcement Impersonation Scams?
In this scam, fraudsters call Horry County residents and claim to be employees of the Horry County Sheriff's Office to cheat them. They solicit payment of fines for phony offenses and may request their targets’ personal information. These fraudsters often threaten residents who they perceive as uncooperative with arrest. Residents should be careful not to give out confidential information to unknown callers as the Sheriff's Office does not request such from them. Persons who get such phone solicitations can confirm the callers’ identities by using reverse phone number lookup services. However, fraudsters can parody caller ID information to display the official phone numbers of the Sheriff's Office. Hence, it is advisable to contact the County Sheriff's Office directly to verify such callers’ claims if you receive these types of calls.
What are Investment Scams?
Scammers place repeated calls to Horry County residents, offering unsolicited guidance on investments that rip them off. They usually impersonate reputable investment firms and businesses. The phone call places an urgency on targeted residents to act quickly and invest, or an opportunity will be missed. If the victim yields to such offers, the venture turns out to be non-existent. In other cases, the victim gets an email from a stranger pointing out the benefits of investing their money in a particular company. Scammers provide their phone numbers in such emails and request a callback. Other types of investment scams are the "get rich quick ventures." These schemes attract people through different ads that promise to be profitable. They may tell residents how to earn money working remotely and advise victims to join investment platforms in an attempt to extort them. Those who invest in such investment opportunities get early returns and may be compelled to reinvest in a second futile attempt. Residents who receive such phone calls may verify the caller by performing a phone number search to determine if the caller’s phone number belongs to the company they claim to represent.
What are Charity Scams?
Fraudsters pose as representatives of charity organizations and prey on unsuspecting Horry County residents' emotions to request donations, which they divert for personal use. These scams are usually rampant after disasters. In some cases, they make up names of charities that sound like legitimate ones to fool their marks into parting with moneyñ mom. Legitimate charities do not pressure anyone to make donations on the spot. Horry County residents should be cautious when they are being pressured into making donations to charities. When contacted by such callers, be sure to research the charity organization before sending any money. Phone number search applications can reveal the identities of these callers.
What are Recovery Scams?
Scammers claim to be with government agencies or recovery agents and try to compel their targets to pay some money, pretending to help them. These fraudsters target previous victims of other scams and request to assist them in recovering their losses. For consumers who have unknowingly paid money to a scam, the chances are that their name is on a "sucker list." A sucker list includes the name, address, phone numbers, and information on how much consumers have spent responding to previous scams. Recovery scams thrive on the belief that people who have fallen victim to scams in the past will likely fall again. The fraudsters will call targeted Horry County residents with the promise to recover their financial losses from previous scam schemes for a fee.
Horry County residents must know that the Telemarketing Sales Rule prohibits recovery agencies from accepting payments until up to seven business days after they deliver the money or previously lost item. If you receive this type of call, you can verify the validity of such an agency using reverse phone lookup services.
What are Robocalls and Spam Calls?
Robocalls are automated calls that relay prerecorded messages to mass phone numbers. They are often associated with telemarketing sales calls, nonprofit organizations, and political campaigns. A robocall used by a telemarketing company is illegal, except such a company has obtained permission from the phone subscriber. However, some robocalls do not require the consent of phone users. These calls include debt collection calls from credit agencies, flight cancellation calls, prescription reminders from health institutions, and political campaign calls. The Federal Government has taken several measures to reduce the influx of fraudulent robocalls, demanding phone companies to implement caller Identification authentication. If implemented, this will minimize illegal phone spoofing.
Spam calls are unwanted automated phone calls sent to a mass audience who did not request them. They are usually placed to random phone numbers, especially to identify the active ones for future scams. Unsolicited robocalls are a form of spam calls. Take the following actions to prevent or reduce robocalls inundation and avoid robocall scams are:
- Answer every question in a call by an unknown caller with precaution. Do not give a definite response to questions asked by such callers.
- Verify the authenticity of incoming calls from unknown phone numbers using reverse phone lookup applications.
- Request for services that block unwanted calls from your phone company to block identified robocall numbers.
- Register your phone number on the National Do Not Call Registry.
- Download a call-blocking application to block identified robocall and spam numbers.
- Report identified robocall numbers online to the FTC.
How Can You Spot and Report Horry County Phone Scams?
Phone scams are on the rise in Horry County, even as fraudsters keep coming up with new ways to defraud uninformed residents. Residents can spot Horry County phone scams by staying alert during phone conversations with unknown callers and performing phone number searches on unknown phone numbers. While some scammers appear helpful and friendly, others may issue threats to enforce compliance. Common indications that a call is a scam call include:
- The caller is aggressive and attempts to coerce targets into disclosing confidential information using threats of fines, audits, arrest, or revocation of licenses
- The caller persuades you to make an on-the-spot purchase decision over the phone. It is important to note that legitimate businesses give individuals time to decide on their offer
- The caller insists that you make payments through odd channels such as bitcoin, gift cards, and wire transfers. Such payments are usually untraceable and irrecoverable
- Offers by unknown callers that promise you quick money are usually scams
Horry County residents are encouraged to report phone scam incidents to relevant public agencies. Some of these agencies are:
- Federal Trade Commission: Horry County residents can report phone scams to the FTC online. The FTC encourages residents to register their phone numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry to reduce the rate of undesirable telemarketing calls and unwanted robocalls.
- Federal Communications Commission: The FCC regulates communication in the United States. It protects Horry County residents from phone scams, and residents can file reports of phone scams with the FCC online.
- Law Enforcement Agencies: The Horry County Sheriff's Office is the primary law enforcement agency in the county. Residents who are victims of phone scams can report them to the Horry County Sheriff's Office by calling (843) 915-5450. They can also call the Horry County Police Department at (843) 915-5350.
- South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs: Victims of phone scams in Horry County can file complaints with the South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs online or via mail to the following address:
South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs
P. O. Box 5757
Columbia, SC 29250