Fax Service That Uses Current Telephone Number?

I have a ten year old Panasonic answering machine/thermo paper fax machine that still works great. But I want both functions to operate through my computer. That way I can delete spam faxes rather than having to receive/print them. Is there a service that I can do that with through my own well-known telephone number?

You can handle this in two ways. Your first choice is to connect your computer’s fax modem to your existing phone line. When there’s an incoming fax, your computer will receive it and store it. You can then delete the spam faxes and print the useful ones on your printer. This solution uses your current phone number and won’t cost you anything (you probably already have a fax modem, and the fax software is probably built in your operating system.) On the downside, you’ll need to leave the computer on all the time if you want to receive faxes any time of the day or night.

The second choice is to get an Internet fax service. All Internet fax services assign you a new phone number — but you can work around this issue by using your phone company’s call forwarding feature to forward all incoming calls to your Internet fax service. The people who send you faxes won’t know that anything has changed, but you’ll get the added convenience of being able to delete faxes that you don’t want to print. I recommend choosing an fax service with a toll-free number so that you aren’t dinged for long-distance charges when forwarding those incoming faxes.

You mentioned that you currently use a combo answering machine/fax machine. If getting voice messages is also important, choose a fax service that also takes voicemail messages.