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Fines issued to businesses that ignored consumer opt outs from marketing calls

Two UK businesses have been fined a total of £150,000 for making marketing calls to consumers who had not consented to receiving them.04 Aug 2017

The Bradford-based businesses, trading as Safestyle UK and Virgo Home Improvements respectively, breached the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR) by contacting consumers whose phone numbers were registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS), the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) said.

The watchdog said the companies' marketing activities had prompted hundreds of complaints and warned that businesses cannot engage in direct marketing calls to people registered with TPS.

Steve Eckersley, ICO head of enforcement, said: "Companies have no excuse – if people are registered with the Telephone Preference Service they are off limits. The law is clear and if companies fall foul of it with illegal and overly aggressive telesales tactics, we will take action on behalf of the people who suffer the nuisance."

The ICO fined Safestyle UK £70,000 and Virgo Home Improvements £80,000 over their breach of PECR.

In a statement, the watchdog said: "The ICO found that neither company had subscribed to the TPS register in order to check whether the people they were contacting had opted out of receiving direct marketing. Both companies also contacted people after being explicitly told not to call again. This is against the law."