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A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

Dabbler
Posts: 20
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎01-11-2019

A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

I have been receiving regular calls for the last few years from people ringing what they expect to be a local horse box supplier business.    After numerous calls I found the web site and lo and behold they have both my landline number on there.   I contacted the business and he confirmed he would ask the web designer to take it off but he hasn't and I am sick to death of getting these calls.   I have now tried to contact the owner of the business 2 or 3 times on his mobile and left messages and nothing is done.

 

How can I get this number taken off his web site and why was I given his number to begin with or he mine?

10 REPLIES 10
Rising Star
Posts: 175
Thanks: 27
Registered: ‎01-08-2007

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

Long shot: is the phone number on their website hard-coded on their web page or is it being picked up from an external directory?

Google Ads are occasionally known for displaying the wrong phone number, for example

https://support.google.com/google-ads/thread/18493843?hl=en

Could be that they have a panel showing the address and phone number obtained from Google Ads, and it's Google that have the wrong number listed. 

Dabbler
Posts: 20
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎01-11-2019

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

Don't know what you mean by "hard coded" on the web site.    When I open their website it is printed on the opening page at the top alongside their company name.

Rising Star
Posts: 175
Thanks: 27
Registered: ‎01-08-2007

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

If you go to some websites, the address and phone number are pulled in from another website.

If it were me, I'd probably look into that to see which company I need to kick to get it fixed, but in your situation I'd just invoke my right to rectification under General Data Protection Regulations:

https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-data-protection/guide-to-the-general-data-protection-r...

The relevant section for your reference is the "At a glance" section at the top. The relevant bit for the company with the wrong number on its website is from "How can we recognise a request?" down.

Your local Trading Standards may be able to advise on how best to approach it that way, although I understand many authorities now point people to Citizens Advice in the first instance.

Dabbler
Posts: 20
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎01-11-2019

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

Sorry, I really don't understand any of that, MY telephone number is on THIS company's website and he should be the one removing it through his web designer which is what he told me he would do but didn't do.

I can't see that Local Trading Standards will be prepared to do anything about this and Citizens Advice presumably are closed at the moment during the lockdown.

 

Also he hasn't "pulled" the number in from anywhere, as I think I understand it, Plusnett have given me just over 12 months ago when I had my existing telephone reconnected, a new telephone number (my property had been rented out and the tenant did not use the landline), they have given me someone else's phone number or he has been given mine but considering I have only had the number just over 12 months it is more likely he had the number before me.    I don't really see what it has to do with Trading Standards although it might be that I am not seeing this matter properly.

 

I am presuming by the way that the company using my number must have given up that landline at some point but not taken the number off his website.

Rising Star
Posts: 175
Thanks: 27
Registered: ‎01-08-2007

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

Citizens Advice are definitely still working - I called them earlier this week over an unrelated matter.

You have a statutory right to have the incorrect exposure of your contact details remediated. Doesn't matter what the reason is. But if you don't tell him you know your rights and are invoking those rights, then he may just think you're asking very nicely for something that isn't particularly important.

It's not a "pretty please can you fix your website for me, so sorry for the inconvenience I'm putting you through" situation.

A firm that systematically ignores data fix questions that are THIS easy to perform, has a poor understanding of the privacy and data protection laws that already exist and which they are required to comply with.

Even if that weren't the case, perhaps their customers are ringing someone's house instead of their office, meaning they are potentially losing customers (or getting a bad reputation) simply by being careless.

Dabbler
Posts: 20
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎01-11-2019

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

I already told him I would go down to his house if he still refused to have it taken off his web site and I have managed to contact the web site designer he used to create his site which was stated at the bottom of his web site, although they have rebranded themselves, perhaps they can use their influence to get him to take it off!     As you say, it is a breach of data protection as far as I am concerned and there must be something I can do to rectify the situation.    I have the suspicion that he must have to pay them to take it off and presumably he doesn't want the expense, or perhaps he tried to contact them with the tel no they were using previously and now perhaps there is no redirection on the phone no to their new premises etc.  I just clicked on their old name on their web site and it redirected me to their new branded website.

Community Veteran
Posts: 7,138
Thanks: 1,671
Fixes: 2
Registered: ‎23-09-2010

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

How about every time a horsey customer calls you tell them "congratulations you are our 1000th customer and you've won a horsebox of your choice. Just call at our business address to claim your prize using the phrase "that's my phone number".

Grafter
Posts: 40
Thanks: 13
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎20-07-2007

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

Get a phone with call blocking and just block the number.

Dabbler
Posts: 20
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎01-11-2019

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

How would I do that when they are different people calling in all the time?   They are all his "potential" customers but you would think he would want to stop losing the business as many would not bother to ring his mobile after getting my number.  I know it would put me off dealing with a business who hasn't even got the right landline no. on their site!

Dabbler
Posts: 20
Fixes: 1
Registered: ‎01-11-2019

Re: A local business is using my landline telephone number, can I get it stopped?

Yes, that might cure him !   😀😂😄