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Which? calls for action on nuisance calls

phone useConsumer group Which? is calling for action by the new Scottish Government to tackle the “modern menace” of nuisance phone calls.

Research reveals Scottish households receive on average 42% more nuisance calls a month than other areas of the UK.

Which?, together with call blocking provider trueCall, have analysed seven million calls across the UK over three years.

They have found that even those people registered with a call blocking service the problem of nuisance calls has got worse, not better.

Which? analysis of calls made to trueCall customers in Scotland found that:

  • Over the last three years, trueCall customers in Scotland received an average of 37 unwanted calls a month, compared to 26 for customers across the UK.
  • Nearly half (45%) of their calls were a nuisance call – compared to 38% across the UK.
  • Older, more vulnerable trueCall customers received an average of 45 calls per month and a quarter (27%) of these more vulnerable customers received more than 60 calls a month.

Which?’s is calling on the Scottish Government to publish an action plan to tackle nuisance calls. It points out that the SNP committed in its 2016 manifesto to convening a summit on nuisance calls.

“We want measures to ensure businesses don’t break the rules, the introduction of policy to reduce the number of nuisance calls and help for vulnerable people to stop unwanted calls,” it says.

Which? is calling for the UK government to introduce:

  • Tougher penalties for senior executives and directors of any company that makes unlawful calls so that they are personally held to account making it harder for companies to continue to flout the rules.
  • Stronger rules to stop companies from using and selling our data without consent.

Alex Neill, Which? director of campaigns and policy, said: “Millions of people are still being bombarded with nuisance calls and consumers are sick and tired of this daily intrusion. While there have been steps in the right direction, this research highlights that more must be done to tackle this menace.

“With consumers in Scotland more badly affected than those in the rest of the UK, the Scottish Government must use their new consumer powers to act quickly to bring about meaningful change that will help reduce the volume of nuisance calls people receive.”

Breakdown by region

Region

Average nuisance calls/month, 2013-2016

Proportion of incoming calls that are a nuisance

All of UK

26

38%

East

23

35%

East Midlands

22

35%

London

20

34%

North East

27

39%

North West

27

39%

Scotland

37

45%

South East

22

35%

South West

23

35%

Wales

24

34%

West Midlands

23

35%

Yorks & Humber

27

38%



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