Ofcom rules could see silent callers fined £2m

Ofcom is warning telemarketers to comply with new regulations to clamp down on silent calls or face fines of up to £2m.

/a/o/c/LandlinePhone.jpg

New rules aimed at preventing consumers receiving repeated silent calls from the same company come into force tomorrow (1 February).

The regulator has been left frustrated in the past that it could only issue a maximum fine of £50,000 but new powers mean repeated offenders could be fined up to £2 million.

It handed Barclaycard the maximum fine in 2008 and has issued 22 penalties since.

Silent calls happen when a company’s automated calling systems dials more numbers than there is staff available to answer the phone.

New rules will prevent a company using answer machine detection equipment more than once a day if an answer machine is ’detected’ on the first attempt.

Ofcom says it received more than 9,000 complaints in 2010 about silent calls, with over 70% of consumers saying that they have received two or more calls in a day from the same company.

In preparation for the introduction of new rules, the telecoms regulator has issued guidelines to the call centres industry on the use of automated dialling equipment.

Latest from Marketing Week

PLEASE SIGN IN OR REGISTER. IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

Register and receive the best content from the only title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we will be your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here