Which? launches online tool to fight nuisance calls
If you're sick to the teeth of nuisance calls and texts, consumer group Which? has launched an online service to help you fight back.
Which estimates that as much as 85% of the UK population are plagued with such calls and messages, yet less than a fifth (17%) of us do anything about it.
However, more than double that amount air their complaints with family and friends, who may be sympathetic but who are powerless to act.
Which? says what's stopping us from making a formal complaint is that we don't think it will reduce the number of unwanted calls and texts (43% of consumers think this) and we don't know how to complain in the first place (31%).
From today, however, you can visit the consumer champion's online complaints tool at which.co.uk/campaigns/nuisance-calls-and-texts and it will direct you straight to the regulator's complaint form quickly and easily.
Which? hopes that arming the regulators with as much information as possible from frustrated consumers will help it take action against companies that are breaking the rules.
Communications Minister Ed Vaizey said: "Nuisance calls are a menace. At best they're an irritation, but at worst they can cause real misery. The more people complain, the more evidence regulators can have to take action against the companies breaking the law."
But what else can you do to put an end to unwanted calls and texts?
- Register your phone number (landline and mobile) with the Telephone Preference Service (tpsonline.org.uk). This free service should stop calls from any British-based telesales and marketing firms. Its registration line is 0845 070 0707 but note registrations take 28 days to come into effect. Unfortunately, however, the service does not cover texts.
- Talk to your provider about services to block unwanted communication. For example, BT offers a number of services to help stop unwanted calls, including 'Privacy at Home', 'Choose to Refuse' and 'Anonymous Call Rejection', some of which you may have to pay for.
- You could also consider purchasing some of the gadgets available. CallBlocker, for example, plugs into your landline and blocks cold callers, certain area codes, silent calls and even international calls. It costs £39.99 but it is approved by the Police.
Look out for your chance to win the device in the September issue of Moneywise.