TalkTalk fined £750,000 for excessive silent sales calls

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The TV, broadband and phone provider was found to have breached Ofcom policy in two telemarketing campaigns

TalkTalk has been fined £750,000 for breaching Ofcom policy on the number of abandoned and silent sales calls a company can make.

Ofcom found TalkTalk, which provides TV, broadband and phone services, had made approximately 9,000 silent and abandoned calls to potential customers during one telemarketing campaign in early 2011.

The regulator said that between February 1 and March 21 2011, TalkTalk breached Ofcom policy on abandoned calls “by a substantial amount” on four occasions.

TalkTalk also failed to ensure information messages were played, meaning consumers received silent calls.

During a separate marketing campaign, Ofcom found TalkTalk failed to ensure that when using AMD technology to make calls to consumers, it created a “reasoned estimate of the technology’s accuracy.” AMD technology works by filtering out calls to answering machines to increase the time agents can spend on live calls.

TalkTalk must pay the fine to Ofcom,which then passes it onto the treasury, within 30 days of being notified.

Ofcom consumer group director Claudio Pollack said: “Silent and abandoned calls can cause annoyance and distress to consumers. Companies must abide by the law and Ofcom’s policies. If they fail to do so then Ofcom will take firm action.

“Today’s penalty sends out a strong message to organisations using call centres that they must comply or face the consequences.”

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