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Call-blocking firm fined for aggressive cold calling

ICO issues £50,000 fine in nuisance-call clampdown

nuisance calls

A company that offered a nuisance call-blocking service has itself been fined for making ‘bullying’ marketing calls.

Point One Marketing – trading as Stop the Calls – offered customers a call-blocking device for their phones, as well as removal from cold-call databases.

But following hundreds of complaints, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) found that the company had marketed the services through ‘aggressive cold calling’.

If you get a call out of the blue from a company claiming that it can block calls, use our guide to get the lowdown on companies claiming they can block nuisance calls.

Bullying cold-call sales

Some complainants reported sales staff ‘shouting at them’ when they declined and asked not to be called again. One claimed her mother – a dementia sufferer – had been pressured into providing credit card details.

The company – formerly Conservo Digital – was found to have called people registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS). People register with the TPS to avoid receiving unsolicited sales or marketing calls. 

It also ignored requests from others to stop the calls, sometimes calling repeatedly on the same day.

The watchdog said that the Bournemouth-based firm breached the Privacy and Electronic Communication Regulations and fined it £50,000.

The latest fine comes days after claims-management firm The Hearing Clinic was fined £220,000 after bombarding people with millions of nuisance calls.

Stopping nuisance calls

Which? executive director Richard Lloyd said: ‘Nuisance calls aren’t just annoying, they can intimidate people too, so regulators must continue to slap down firms that treat cold calling rules with disdain.

‘We would urge consumers to report all nuisance calls and texts to help regulators go after those flouting the regulations. We also want to see senior executives personally held to account if their company makes unlawful calls.’

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