Two companies behind millions of nuisance calls and hundreds of thousands of spam text messages have been fined a collective £100,000 by regulators.
Glasgow-based Omega Marketing Services has been fined £60,000 following an investigation prompted by 177 complaints from the public.
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) found that the company had bombarded householders with 1.6 million nuisance calls trying to sell solar panels and green-energy equipment.
Vincent Bond Ltd has also been fined £40,000 for sending spam texts.
The ICO said the London-based debt-management company sent 346,162 texts despite the people not having given their permission to receive the messages.
Unwanted calls and texts can be a real nuisance. Put a stop to them with our handy tool to report the companies making nuisance calls.
Illegal nuisance calls
The ICO acted after establishing that Omega Marketing had ignored the rules around telephone marketing by contacting people who were registered with the telephone preference service (TPS) and who had not given their permission to receive calls.
One complainer said: ‘My mother would have bought the product they were selling just to stop the phone calls.’
Another told the ICO: ‘If someone knocked on your door with such regularity, they’d get arrested for harassment.’
Registering with the TPS
The TPS is a free-to-use register that records your preference not to receive unsolicited sales or marketing calls.
It’s against the law for companies to call consumers who are registered on the TPS without their clear consent.
It’s worth noting, however, that people have had mixed experiences after registering with the TPS.
Some have told Which? that they noticed a reduction in unwanted calls, while others said they still receive them.
Calling time on nuisance calls
We’re campaigning to call time on nuisance calls and texts.
We’re urging the government to make senior executives accountable by law for their company’s nuisance calls and to require businesses to show their number when they call.
We also want you to have more control over how your personal data is used.
- Use our guide to stop and report unwanted text messages
- Follow our step-by-step advice to stop unwanted premium-rate text messages
- Do you agree that company directors should be held responsible for nuisance calls?