Need An Out? Use the Fake Call API

Allen Tipper, August 1st, 2011

Fake CallWe all sometimes end up in situations that we’d rather not be in. From annoying coworkers to bad blind dates, sometimes a way out can be rather convenient. As technology advances, new ways of getting out of such situations are often showing up. One of these is the Fake Call API, designed to send phone calls to your phone via a web API call.

It works like this: you make an API call to set up verification that you do, in fact, own the given phone. You do this as follows, as described by the site:

creating/verifying an account

This will call the number you specify and ask you to verify you have the phone in your possession by entering a 2 digit code. The password is whatever you want it to be, and which you’ll use in the future for Basic Authentication when you need to do any other API calls.

This is also how you change your password if you’ve forgotten it.

PUT http://api.fakecall.net/v1/account/(your number)
password=your%20password%20here

Creates an account for 123-456-7890 with password “your password here”, which number and password will be used for HTTP Basic Auth for all other API calls in the future:

curl –request PUT –data “password=your password here” \

http://api.fakecall.net/v1/account/1234567890

After doing that, you can make API calls to authorize other accounts with their own verified phone numbers to make calls to your number through the service as well, so you can allow friends to use the API to rescue you. You can get a list of those authorized to call you, delete your account, or make a call to yourself, using the password you set up.

At the moment, the service does not have its own SSL certificate, though you can use HTTPS with a warning. Due to the service’s nature, you are handing your phone number to the owner of the API, so it isn’t the most secure of services. It is free, however, and rather neat. In addition to being an API, it’s also a mashup, built on the Twilio Voice API.

One could easily use the Fake Call API to execute code at a specific time, such as cron, to give yourself an out during a blind date, family function, party, or anything you might like an out for. Making a mobile client for this could also work well, either to use for yourself or for a friend using the authorization trick. All in all, it’s a simple solution to an age-old problem, and you can’t beat the price, or the ease of implementation.

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One Response to “Need An Out? Use the Fake Call API”

August 22nd, 2011
at 4:59 pm
Comment by: johnchow

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