Hearing claims firm hit for turning deaf ear to ICO

Racing post office bare all for ICOThe Information Commissioner’s Office is continuing its battle against rogue marketing calls and has performed a pincer movement with the Claims Management Regulator in an effort to wipe out one serial offender.
Aurangzeb Iqbal, trading as the Hearing Clinic, has already been fined £220,000 by the CMR for nuisance calls and has now been ordered to stop making calls by the ICO or face a spanking from the data regulator too.
Over 1,000 complaints were made to the ICO and the Telephone Preference Service about his business.
Complainants said callers stated they could be in danger of losing their hearing as they had worked in a loud industrial environment, even though for many people that wasn’t the case. The company made multiple calls to households and reports were received of aggressive sales callers using out of date personal information.
In May, Iqbal was given a period of monitoring by the ICO and, despite the advice offered by the regulator during those three months, 278 additional complaints were made about nuisance calls. The enforcement notice applies to Iqbal and any other businesses he may own as a sole trader.
ICO group enforcement manager Andy Curry said: “Aurangzeb Iqbal had every chance to improve his practices in line with the law. Our team provided advice and guidance and yet the complaints kept coming in.
“The Claims Management Regulator has already fined Aurangzeb Iqbal but our enforcement notice should stop him from making any more nuisance calls.
“We believe complaints about this type of hearing claims call are on the rise and we do have more enforcement action in the pipeline. This should send a clear message to these companies that they must operate in line with the regulations or face the consequences.”
During this investigation the ICO has worked closely with the CMR which has recently issued Aurangzeb Iqbal with a £220,000 fine, partly for making nuisance calls. The CMR is part of the Ministry of Justice and can issue fines based on a company’s turnover.
The fine issued by CMR is currently under appeal.

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