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Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

thimble323
Newbie
Posts: 1
Registered: 04-09-2012

Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

We have started to receive several of these automated messages a day. The FAQ provided by PN says we should complain to the Information Commissioners Office each time to report the miscreant, but what a drag. Is there a quicker, (and preferably automated) filter available?
18 REPLIES
elkieluca
Grafter
Posts: 204
Registered: 21-08-2010

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

I know how you feel I have been getting these calls for months and months every single day at least twice.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,027
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

As the majority of them are international there is nothing you or the Information Commissioner can do about it.
This is why I have paid extra for Caller Display
Infinity
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 5,933
Thanks: 234
Fixes: 3
Registered: 19-06-2011

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

Quote from: thimble323
We have started to receive several of these automated messages a day. The FAQ provided by PN says we should complain to the Information Commissioners Office each time to report the miscreant, but what a drag. Is there a quicker, (and preferably automated) filter available?

When this happened to me a while back, I set my home answerphone to cut in immediately, long message, volume on minimum, the phone wouldn't ring, and I just checked messages later.
Not one automated caller left a message, of course.
Immediate answerphone of course means the calls are "Answered" first, as far as the originator is concerned, annoying for them.
The calls ended soon after, presumably noted that no-one answers.
Probably the same for on-line answerphones too, where you only get informed when you pick up your handset later.
And of course you can always block number withheld callers, if they withhold numbers.
alanf
Aspiring Pro
Posts: 1,931
Thanks: 78
Fixes: 1
Registered: 17-10-2007

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

One possible (but expensive) solution is a TrueCall box. One of its options is to require a caller it does not recognise to press a specified key on their phone before it will ring your phone. So unless the robot that is calling is programmed to understand the request and act on it problem solved.
http://www.truecall.co.uk/acatalog/Press.html
elkieluca
Grafter
Posts: 204
Registered: 21-08-2010

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

I've also paid extra for Caller Display but I have family in Spain and Ireland and it says International for them as well so it doesn't really help with those calls.
Infinity
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 5,933
Thanks: 234
Fixes: 3
Registered: 19-06-2011

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

Could they text you just before they call you ?
Or what we call "One Bell" you
Where they ring, let it ring once, then ring again.
FuchsiaCottage
Dabbler
Posts: 17
Fixes: 1
Registered: 30-08-2012

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

Quote
One possible (but expensive) solution is a TrueCall box.

It's not right that we should have to pay to stop unwanted calls. The Direct Marketing Association or the ICO should pay, not us.
I think telcos are really missing a good opportunity here. There is no technical reason why they can't have a constantly updated list of spam numbers and offer customers a feature whereby those numbers are automatically blocked.
If they advertised on the basis that spam calls can be automatically blocked , I'm sure many people would be interested in signing up.
Ali
Community Veteran
Posts: 2,106
Registered: 06-02-2008

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

Our telephone service is a resold BT Wholesale product so we could not implement this. In addition, there would be significant DPA implications for scanning the numbers of every inbound call to every customer if this were implemented by BTW so unfortunately I don't think it's something that could be pushed forward, sorry.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,313
Thanks: 86
Fixes: 3
Registered: 08-01-2008

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

Not really sure about DPA implications Ben, after all you maintain a record (for the customer's benefit) of outgoing numbers dialled which I'd have thought would be a lot more sensitive than incoming numbers.
Is this not entirely analogous to spam filtering in the email system (though actually a lot simpler as it's based only on the originating ID of the caller)?
The REAL problem, though, is the fact that international calls remain unidentified (other than being 'international') as these represent a large proportion of unwanted calls as well as being outside the juristiction of UK authorities and blocking all international calls is a bit harsh even for people who don't have relatives abroad since it may prevent, for example, a utility company call centre from contacting you.
Until telephone systems are standardised between different countries it looks like we are pretty much stuck.  Sad
Call me 'w23'
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James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

I think that rather than a DPA implication, there would be more of a cost implication as we currently do not do this and there would be a necessary investment in hardware and systems for no 'real' gain.
FuchsiaCottage
Dabbler
Posts: 17
Fixes: 1
Registered: 30-08-2012

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

Quote
there would be a necessary investment in hardware and systems for no 'real' gain.

The gain would be in more customers due to the extra publicity that implementing phone anti-spam feature would bring.
As for the DPA, I hereby give permission for Plusnet to monitor my incoming phone numbers for the purpose of blocking those that are known to be cold callers, telemarketers, and other such scum.
Seriously, if you did implement such a feature you'd be in all the newspapers, TV news, and people would flock to sign up with Plusnet.
The only problem for Plusnet is the other telcos would soon get on the bandwagon. Even so, the customer wins.
Ali  Smiley
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

I didn't mean for that to read quite so harshly Smiley
The problem with investment is that we would have to recoup it from somewhere.
I agree it would be nice - but there's a load of nice things we could do that we can't justify, and I'm not convinced it would bring much in the way of new sign ups.
Community Veteran
Posts: 2,106
Registered: 06-02-2008

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

And please don't forget that we can't do this as we don't have your calls on our network - we only get sent details of your call in order to bill you, from BTW.
alanf
Aspiring Pro
Posts: 1,931
Thanks: 78
Fixes: 1
Registered: 17-10-2007

Re: Stopping automated telephone marketing calls

Someone from the Information Commissioner's Office was interviewed on BBC Radio 4's Money Box programme today about unsolicited and illegal calls and texts. He was saying how much they were stepping up measures but all he did was confirm how toothless the watchdog is.  I posted before from what had been said on Panorama that not one UK based transgressor had suffered any penalty to date. This was confirmed as still the case in this programme.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/i/b01mhmzr/
Starts 14m 40s in.