Why companies need to think before making marketing calls

By  Adam Stevens, Team Manager.

stanley The ICO has been issuing more fines against companies making nuisance calls. We’ve issued £250,000 of fines this week, all to companies that appeared to have no interest in following the law.

However that isn’t always the case. Sometimes companies aware of the law wrongly trust that the lists of names and numbers they buy come with the right permissions to make marketing calls.

That mistake, and lack of due diligence in checking exactly what they are buying, results in companies calling people on the TPS, without consent. Firstly, this means they call a lot of very cross people, who aren’t likely to buy their products. And secondly, it means the companies potentially face a significant fine from the ICO.

We’re working hard to crackdown on people selling lists without consumer’s permission. But the Privacy and Electronic Communication Regulations make clear that an organisation making marketing calls is responsible for ensuring those calls are in line with the law. That means it is the company’s job to check what consent people on a list have given to receive marketing calls. Failure to do that can mean a fine of up to £500,000.

The ICO produces clear advice to explain to companies how to get it right. If you’re a company thinking about making marketing calls, you need to look at this guidance.

Start with the video we’ve launched today. It takes you through Stanley’s journey, from entering a competition to win a holiday to being inundated with nuisance calls. Watch the video, think about where your company fits in, and make sure you’re following the rules.

Read our Direct Marketing guidance for organisations.

Adam StevensAdam Stevens manages the Intelligence Hub within the Enforcement Department, which collects, analyses and disseminates information with the aim of guiding and supporting the ICO’s approach to regulatory action.
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