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August 24, 2010

Auto Dialers Misused in the U.K. Create Nuisance Phone Calls

By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor

The use of auto dialers within the call center can streamline productivity and ensure more right contact calls are completed. While making such calls is important for the call center, they are sometimes viewed as a nuisance by the public.

According to a recent article in The Courier, the Call Prevention Registry is warning households throughout the UK that unsolicited calls are expected to ramp up as more call centers are being established throughout the country.As many of these call centers do use auto dialers, it is easy to complete the annual 1.5 billion nuisance calls to UK households. It is estimated that 1.4 million of those calls are aimed specifically at households in the Fife and Tayside area each year. 

Such a number means that every man, woman and child can receive two calls.

The technology available today makes it very easy for even the layman to open a call center. Profits increasingly outweigh the initial cost of implementation. And, as the recession hit hard throughout developed marketplaces, loan and debt management company calls continue to increase.

As the country is emerging from the recession and enjoying the growth of the recovery, there are some who have developed a false sense of financial security. Auto dialers are being used to take advantage of this disposition as areas with high unemployment rates are being hit hard with debt management cold calls.

High pressure sales tactics are also being deployed when calls are made to more affluent areas. Students are also an increased target for scams and marketing ploys, made easier with the use of auto dialers.

The use of such technology – which is illegal in many states in the U.S. – is creating situations where people are unable to talk to the callers to tell them not to call back. In addition, sales rapport is failing to relate to customers in a sympathetic manner.

Silent calls generated by auto dialers and robo-call technology, can be intimidating for the elderly and the vulnerable. The good news is there is new legislation in place that requires that a message be relayed with the company’s information within the first few seconds of the call.

It is unfortunate that the use of auto dialers in situations of malicious or nuisance calls is giving this technology a bad name. For those living in the UK, it is time to report abusers in order to allow legitimate businesses to thrive.

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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