Avoid Cold Calls and Eat Your Supper in Peace


Few things are more annoying than a cold call while you are trying to relax and enjoy a meal after a long day.  Nuisance calls cannot easily be avoided all together, but there are ways to reduce the number of calls that you receive.  Here are a few things to consider, and you can get some more tips here.


All companies based in the UK are not allowed to make cold calls or marketing calls to numbers registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS).  Registering your number with the TPS will go some way towards reducing the number of nuisance calls that you receive.  However, this will not prevent your receipt of spammy/scammy phone calls, or calls from companies based out the UK.

Get off the lists

Even though many calls will come from parties having taken your number from the phone book, many others will have been “farmed” by third parties from businesses to whom you provided your number.  Often, for example, when you are paying for goods or services you will asked for your contact information.  Or, think about the number of times you provided your phone details while filling out forms online. Companies may sell this information to third parties unless you indicate that you do not permit this, so be on the lookout for notices to this effect.  Make sure to uncheck any permissions to share your details (typically the default will be to allow them).

Be firm

When you receive cold calls that are not blocked by TPS, inform the person calling that you wish to be removed from their calling list.  Be sure to collect as much information as you can at that time – including details of who is calling, from what number, when and why. If calls continue to come from that number or organization, your service provider may be able to help.

Don’t give any information

If you are not certain if a call is coming from a legitimate source, remember that any business with whom you do business will never ask you for personal information about yourself, your accounts or your passwords. Nor will they transfer to other lines. If you suspect that a call is fraudulent, hang up and call the business directly if you are concerned that there may have been a legitimate purpose.

Just don’t answer

Of course we always worry about missing an important call.  However, the numbers of friends and family will be easily recognized with call display.  A business calling with legitimate purpose will call during business hours, will have an unblocked number, and will leave a message.  Remember, anyone who needs to reach you legitimately will typically leave a message.  If you don’t have a messaging service, you can simply hit redial to learn who has called you.  Spam or telemarketing calls will very often not be connected.

Unwanted calls can be anything from irritating to harassing.  If you feel that calls are threatening, you should immediately report them to your company and to the police, who can advise about next steps.  Otherwise, try to reduce you exposure to nuisance callers, and remember that you have options and rights with respect to protecting your privacy.