Caller Protection Company Fined For Cold Calling

A West Sussex company has been fined £40,000 for making nuisance calls to the elderly.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) ruled that IT Protect Ltd, in Bognor Regis, broke the law because it called people registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS), which is a service home users can sign up to for preventing unsolicited calls.

Ironically, this firm was making nuisance calls to people to sell them a call blocking device. But by phoning people registered with the TPS it broke the law. The ICO  investigation was aided by members of the public reporting the nuisance calls they’d received from IT Protect.. They told ICO that the firm had preyed on the elderly and misled people by giving the impression they were working with BT.”  STEVE ECKERSLEY, HEAD OF ENFORCEMENT, ICO

IT Protect told the ICO it had bought a list of people and phone numbers from another firm, but it had not verified that the numbers were not on the TPS list and hence could not legally be cold called.

Reliance on another firm does not preclude the company from law breaking.

The law says that calls should not be made to anyone who has registered with the TPS unless they have told the caller that they wish to receive such calls from them. Companies failing to screen against the TPS, who then call people without consent, can expect enforcement action by the ICO.

IT Protect is the first company to be slapped with a bill by the ICO since it took over management of the Telephone Preference System in December

TPS  is a free service designed to protect people from unsolicited sales or marketing calls

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