Why TPS Screen your data?
We will explain here why companies need to TPS screen their data.
Telephone Preference Service (TPS) screening is not optional, it’s the law
Since May 1999, it’s been an offence to make unsolicited calls to numbers registered on the TPS. Although many companies have been fined by the ICO for breaking the law, apparently there was not enough of a deterrent to rogue businesses to ensure they properly screened their data.
The law was changed in the UK on 6th April 2015 and the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) can now levy fines for simply annoying people or causing either inconvenience or anxiety. This will mean more fines for companies, the loss of regulatory authorisations such as those from the Ministry of Justice (MOJ), Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or Solicitors Regulatory Authority (SRA) and plenty of bad press and negative blogging.
As we’re sure you can appreciate, the decision as to whether someone has suffered annoyance, inconvenience or anxiety is not something that anyone can really measure, so it will be up to the ICO to decide…and for those of you who are unsure…that’s a dangerous situation to find yourself in.
The ICO wants to make your
business front page news
What if I don’t?
If you don’t screen you risk an enforcement notice, fine and possibly the loss of your regulated status. If any of those things are important to you, then ensure your staff and suppliers understand the importance of TPS screening.
What can you do to avoid a fine?
Screen your data against the TPS
First and foremost, screen your calling data against the Telephone Preference Service. It’s easy, inexpensive and quick.
There are two registers
- one register for consumers, partnerships and sole traders (the Telephone Preference Service or TPS); and
- a second register for limited and plc businesses (the Corporate Telephone Preference service or CTPS)
If you’re calling consumers, you need only screen against the TPS, but if you’re calling businesses, you’ll need to screen against both registers.
Operate a Do Not Call (DNC) List
It’s common sense, but also a legal requirement, that if someone you call asks you not to call them again then you must follow their wishes and not call them again.
To achieve this, you need to operate a proper DNC process.
TPS Services offers free DNC management that allows you to create users and give them a URL that they can use to enter new additions to multiple DNC lists that you can then download or integrate into other applications.
We provide you with one central place to manage and collate your DNC requests.
What if I get a TPS complaint?
If you get a complaint from someone claiming to be on the TPS then follow these simple steps:
- Respond quickly - it always helps
- Check their number against the TPS - sometimes consumers register their numbers against the wrong TPS register and register on the CTPS in error. They then complain about receiving calls without realising that businesses calling consumers will not have screened against the CTPS.
- If a consumer has registered on the wrong list, then another problem is that CTPS registrations expire after 1 year, so they’ll be registered nowhere. TPS registrations don’t expire.
- Check with your supplier. If they have supplied you a record on the TPS, chances are they will have an opted in record for it. Place the emphasis upon them to resolve the matter.
- If you get a complaint from a regulator they will often want to see evidence that you have TPS screening facilities in place and may ask for proof.
Failing to TPS screen could result in the loss of membership with regulators
Just some of the regulators who take issue with calling people registered on the TPS