Solihull’s MP Lorely Burt has joined forces with consumer groups to highlight the problem of silent telephone calls, which cause misery for thousands of consumers.
Lorely welcomed the campaign from communications regulator Ofcom, consumer champions Consumer Focus and Age Concern to raise awareness of silent calls and how to avoid them.
Silent calls are caused by automated calling systems known as diallers which are often used in call centres to generate and attempt to connect calls. If there are not enough agents to handle the calls the dialler makes, it may result in silence when the called person picks up the phone.
Lorely said: “Although silent calls can seem intimidating, they are usually just marketing calls and are often not malicious. However, they can be a cause of great anxiety for many people across Solihull. Knowing how to avoid them is one way we can take control.
“The government need to take action. They must enforce Ofcom’s regulations more strictly, to require call centres using automated systems to play an information message if a call is abandoned, to prevent the call from being silent.
“Where companies continue causing distress by making silent calls, I would strongly urge people to report them to Ofcom so they can investigate and take enforcement action if necessary.”
Gordon Lishman, chief executive of Age Concern England, added: “We are very pleased that Ofcom has taken action.”