The relentless pursuit of companies which are abusing the Telephone Preference Service has triggered new fines totalling £250,000, following a double Information Commissioner’s Office investigation which exposed a barrage of nearly 2 million calls to people who had registered with the service.
DM Design Bedrooms based in Cumbernauld, Glasgow, has been fined £160,000 for making more than 1.6 million nuisance calls to TPS subscribers between April and November 2017.
During that period, the TPS and the ICO received 99 complaints, including: “Having told this company before that I do not want to receive calls from them, it is concerning that they just ignore this and continue to harass people.”
In a separate ICO investigation, Solartech North East based in Middlesbrough was fined £90,000 for making 74,902 calls to numbers registered with the TPS between May and June 2017.
The ICO also found that Solartech did not screen its calls against the TPS and had not even signed up to use the service, despite claiming it had. Solartech also purchased third party data without undertaking any sufficient due diligence.
Enforcement notices have been issued to both DM Design Bedrooms and Solartech North East under the Privacy & Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR), ordering the firms to stop their illegal marketing activity.
ICO group enforcement manager Andy Curry said: “Making marketing calls to people who are registered with the TPS is completely unacceptable, and we will take robust enforcement action against firms that are contacting people without their consent.
“We appreciate the public’s help by reporting nuisance calls to the ICO. In the case of DM Design, the 99 people who complained led to us uncovering a huge nuisance call campaign which was breaking the law.”
Last week it was revealed that directors of companies which flout PECR legislation will be personally liable for fines of up to £500,000. However, the law does not come into effect until December 17.
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