/ Technology

Your view: purrrlease stop nuisance calling

Cold-called cat meme

Nuisance calls haven’t hung up just yet. You’re still being bombarded, and we’re still campaigning on your behalf. Here’s a round up of your recent cold call trials from our Facebook page and Which? Conversation.

On Facebook, we shared our Cold-Called Cat. And Enid added this comment:

‘When one is constantly telling them to take your name off the list and one is constantly being pestered, I can understand why people get irate. I am sick and tired of these calls! My brother-in-law told them he was going to get a pen and left the phone on, one cannot blame people for taking these measures. It is harassment.’

Kathleen’s husband is fed up with cold calls:

‘My poor husband gets so irate with these people and calls from the ambulance chasers. It does his blood pressure no good at all. Wish we could get it stopped.’

Jane relies on her answering machine:

‘I’ve stopped answering my phone if I don’t recognise the number. I figure that if it’s important enough they’ll leave a message. They rarely do…’

Tyler turns the tables on cold callers:

‘I either ask them to hold and put the phone on a cushion face down (they eventually give up and hang up), or I say it’s not a convenient time right now so could they give me their home number and I’ll call them, they say no! And I say funny that you don’t like being called at home either!

‘Caller ID is the most useful as you can screen most calls and it’s free if you have the right phone.’

BT charges for Caller Display

Talking of Caller ID, we’ve been discussing BT’s price changes here on Which? Convo. In the future BT customers who want Caller Display will have to pay. Stephen had this to say:

‘I find it difficult to understand how BT can justify charging for caller display as being able to see the number calling before answering is important in screening unwanted calls. Putting up rental is bad enough but creating a charge for caller display can not be justified.’

Banjo will be switching to another provider:

‘I like caller ID. One of the reasons I stay with BT is because it was free. Now that it isnโ€™t free I am free to look at other providers. The savings I make on their contracts might pay for caller ID on their networks.’

And Andy Cooke concluded:

‘Phone companies should be doing everything they can to empower their customers to be able to identify nuisance calls and so assist in providing information with which to report companies abusing the TPS system, which is far from effective.’

Inquiry on nuisance calls

And just to update you on our Calling Time on Nuisance Calls and Texts campaign;ย this week we gave evidence to an All Party Group inquiry on nuisance calls. The inquiry took place over three days, where 20 witnesses gave evidence to MPs from across the UK and political spectrum.ย We gave evidence on your behalf, and the Group will now produce a set of recommendations to be presented to the government.

So, that’s the week that was. Are you still being plagued by nuisance calls and texts? Oh, and if you have any caption suggestions for our cold-called cat, please share them!


Is there a video of the All Party Group inquiry on nuisance calls? A link to it would be informative.

On the September 03 hearings, a couple of MP’s were very worried they may be prevented from calling their constituents to find out if they needed help. They asked for clarification on this. Obviously they were more worried that they would be blocked from canvassing with the election not too far away and the forthcoming Scottish Referendum.

Chris says:
11 October 2013

What chance have we got of a satisfactory outcome from the All Party Group inquiry if our MPs are so interested in preserving their ability to cold call their constituents?

Dippy says:
5 February 2014

Im fed up with this number calling me early in the morning then again mid morning. I just press any key and it makes a long irritating noise for the caller. How can we stop these types of calls coming through. Is there a number we can call and sign up for nuisance callers?

Well, you asked for it!

Cold calls: my pet hate.
Get off fe-line.
Cold calls make me petulant.
Feline angry.
Another rat on the line.
Crabby Tabby (hates cold calls)
“Have you had P.P.I?” … “No! Just dis-temper.”

I believe that this is the fourth conversation about nuisance calls and they still keep rolling in. There’s obviously still money to be made from them and enough rats out there who don’t care about the consequences.

We deserve to know what happened to the cat. Strangled, electrocuted or what?

I suppose it will make the campaign more memorable, though nuisance phone calls do that for me. ๐Ÿ™

Norma says:
12 October 2013

I am fed up with receiving an automated call from this firm which say I haven’t taken the opportunity to use my Government funded boiler.

It was a male voice originally but they now have a woman. This number rings me at least once every day. Yesterday I did press ‘2’ when asked and spoke to someone, told him to remove my number from their list or I would report them. Strangely, he hung up on me.

This number is: 0161 3217891

It’s apparently a scam. Lots of people at whocallsme.com saying thev’ve told the Information Commissioners Office but they keep calling


Patrick, any opinion on why the ICO can’t do anything?

Cliff Cordiner says:
8 November 2013

Hey Norma, you are lucky you only get one a day. I get between 5 and 8 every single day. All about the boiler which I do not qualify for in any case. I no longer need an alarm clock as I get my first one every morning at 8am, including Saturdays. Thankfully I get a lie in on Sunday as it must be their day off. The last one is usually around 8pm. Yesterday I had 5, and today I have had 7. I miss most of them after 8am as I am out at work all day, but I get to hear them all when I pick up my recorded messages each evening.

I was speaking to someone I know who recently got a job telephone cold calling (which he hates). He told me that most small businesses don’t check the Telephone Preference Service list before making calls, because it costs them too much to obtain the TPS list of numbers they shouldn’t call.
Is this true? If it is, then it explains why I still get calls in spite of being registered with TPS.

Since having a minor accident well over a year ago, I’ve been bombarded with calls at home and on my mobile from people suggesting I could claim injury compensation. One started by telling me the other driver was claiming a whiplash injury and seemed at first to be suggesting I would need to be involved in that claim – it soon became apparent that my ‘involvement’ was meant to be a claim of my own!

It seems to me that with their ingenuity and determination those people making the calls should be able to get more productive jobs.

How did they get your number? Did you tell Action Fraud about it?

Your campaign PPI cold calls has been very effective. Green Cold Calls have now taken their place.
I am receiving several per week including some from ‘International number’. These people do not explain that everyone is not able to access the deal. Why should we be bothered with these calls
especially when we are on TPS and exdirectory

[This comment has been moved from another Conversation.]

I am not receiving many nuisance calls now. At one time I was averaging two or three calls a day, but I am now getting fewer calls than this per week. The main problem used to be the Windows scam but it must be several months since I have had one of these calls.

I hope it is not long before nuisance calls are consigned to the history books.

12 calls yesterday 6today I am 76 years old by the time I get to the phone it stops nothing on the answer machine if it goes to it also I find it very stressfull after heart op.

Richard Moss says:
6 December 2013

I hope that any progress regarding cold calling will include the ” we are just doing a survey” companies which seem to be really popular at present, the last few from legal companies – one calling itself “Lawyers UK” ringing from a Manchester landline. TPS tell me they can’t validate ! Puzzled ?

jimw says:
26 March 2014

In the last few months a plague of silent and call centre calls (mostly non-British) has bedevilled us. Usually 2 or 3 silent and 2 or 3 call centre calls a day. My wife has a serious incurable illness and it is driving us mad. We have TPS for British calls, but we don’t yet have caller ID. We are going to get it, however. What puzzles us is that we were call-free for 2-3 years before all this started. We are sick of it all.

Carl says:
21 April 2015

The landline has been ruined because of these callers. It is interesting to note that companies like Virgin now offer broadband plans without having to have a phone landline, although there is not much difference in the cost of you decide to have it. I wonder if this was offered partly because of this reason.

Had my first success on Friday at sending an invoice for my time wasted by a cold caller. The culprit was Weatherproof UK Ltd. who had phoned me three times on a TPS registered number. I sent them a stiff letter pointing out the error of their ways and they sent me a cheque for ยฃ120. If every TPS registered householder was able to do this the companies would soon find it cheaper to buy the TPS data file and clean their calling lists.

I assume that they had run my letter past their solicitors who advised them to pay up rather than contest the invoice in the small claims court. If anyone would like the text of the letter to try for themselves, let me know and I’ll post a template here.

what about intrusive abusive EMAILS rom a company that is warning me that my details are vulnerable and not safe. They pretend to police my id. I want to delete my gmail address that they target but cannot find out how. how do I report this. I have the company details and it sends messages every single day to an email address i dare not now open .Thank you Which for providing a way for people to deal with these unkind selfish and depressing psychopathic people who want to get money from us no matter how

This comment was removed at the request of the user

Patricia: simply don’t access the gmail account again. The problem with gmail is you get what you pay for. If it’s been infiltrated (which happens with many email account addresses, because your details are often sold on) then open a new gmail account under a completely new name and never access the old account again.

But ideally think of getting a paid-for account. You could, for instance, buy your own domain name and set up email on that. And there are numerous free email account providers, as well, so it’s really easy to get rid of the irritants in the email world.

I have never used free email accounts but every year but I have known users who have had their accounts hacked, sometimes more than once.

Although I use my ISPs mail account for most of my email I realise that I will have to notify all my contacts if I decide to switch ISP. I am fortunate in still having access to the email service provided by my former employer, like other retired university staff. Ian’s suggestion of getting your own domain is an excellent solution for email, especially if you also want to host a website for any reason.

You’re spot on about the danger of free email accounts. We have a few domains and we use the emails associated with those for family and friends. For any business we use ‘disposable’ emails, which is very easy to do if you own your own domain. BT also provide a number of disposable addresses and I imagine other ISPs do the same.