This latest move by the Government follows news that a substantial number of fines totalling £895,000 have been issued by the ICO. In 2015, this Government made it easier to fine nuisance callers by removing the need for consumers to prove that unwanted marketing calls were causing substantial distress and damage.
Companies can risk fines of up to £2 million from Ofcom and a further £500,000 from the ICO if they continue to bombard consumers with unwanted calls.
ICO Head of Enforcement, Steve Eckersley said:
Any change that makes it easier for us to track down and take action against companies making nuisance calls is a change that will reduce the annoyance these calls cause.
We do investigate unscrupulous companies who hide their identities and we can track them down, but it certainly makes our job more difficult. And when people are able to identify the number behind the call they’ve received, they’re more likely to complain to us and that means we’re more able to take action.
We welcome this move, which we’ve been consulted on throughout.
Which? Executive director Richard Lloyd, said:
This is another important victory in the fight against nuisance calls. With marketing firms now being forced to display their numbers when making calls, it will make it much easier for people to report them and enforcement action to be taken when companies break the law.
ICO Guide to Privacy Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR)
ICO Guide to Direct Marketing 2016