Caller ID (caller identification, CID), also called calling line identification (CLID), calling number delivery (CND), calling number identification (CNID) or calling line identification presentation (CLIP), is a telephone service, available in analog and digital phone systems and most voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) applications, that transmits a caller's number to the called party's telephone equipment during the ringing signal, or when the call is being set up but before the call is answered. Where available, caller ID can also provide a name associated with the calling telephone number. The information made available to the called party may be displayed on a telephone's display, on a separately attached device, or be processed by an attached computer with appropriate interface hardware.
Caller ID may be used to display a caller's telephone number (and, in association with a database, the caller's name) on a called user's telephone, computer or television screen. This works in most countries; although systems are incompatible, each country will have appropriate equipment. A modem can pass CLID information to a computer for purposes of call logging or blocking, but this can be problematic as modems in different countries have different systems, causing hardware or software incompatibilities. However, many modems are designed and programmed to handle multiple signalling methods, and can be configured to use the local standard.
Caller ID may be used to track down or limit the impact of telemarketers, prank calls, and other annoyances. However, it can also impede communication by enabling users to become evasive. The concept behind caller ID is the value of informed consent; however, it also poses problems for personal privacy. Another problem is that the possibility of caller ID spoofing makes it unreliable.
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