ICO Hands Out £350K Fine to Nuisance Call Company

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The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has slapped a £350,000 fine on a marketing company which made 75 million nuisance calls in just four months.

Miss-sold Products UK Ltd made the staggering number of automated calls between November 2015 and March 2016.

The calls mainly included recorded messages promoting PPI compensation claims, but did so without the recipient’s prior consent, breaking the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 (PECR) legislation.

The ICO explained further:

“It also broke the law by failing to identify the organisation making the calls, while it used so-called ‘added value’ numbers that generate revenue when an individual calls the number, which is then apportioned and passed to associated companies and the network carrier.”

The ICO received 146 complaints in total, with some users claiming there was no opt-out option, while others revealed they were worried the late-night calls could have been from family members or those they provided care for.

“This company blatantly ignored the laws on telephone marketing, making a huge volume of intrusive calls over a short period of time and without any apparent attempt to ensure they had the consent of the people they were harassing,” said ICO enforcement group manager, Andy Curry.

“The ICO will come down hard on rogue operators who want to treat the law and the UK public with contempt. We hope the government will bring forward plans to introduce personal liability for directors as a matter of urgency, to stop them from escaping punishment after profiting from nuisance calls and texts.”

The ICO has been frustrated in the past trying to recover fines from directors of such companies.

In this case, the director of Miss-sold had applied to strike it off the Companies House Register but the ICO has blocked the move in a bid to help it recover the financial penalty, and for the actions of the director to be fully scrutinized.

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