Making silent calls to cost firm up to £2m

The UK government has come up with a new legislation that declares that firms harassing customers with silent and abandoned calls could face fines of up to £2 million.

Previously the firms were facing a maximum of £50,000 fine for silent and abandoned calls. The government has announced such a huge increase in fine in a bid to crack down on the nuisance.

Call centre systems Silent use predictive dialing systems to automatically generate silent call by connecting more lines than staff available. The system leaves the individual who answers the call with a silent line.

Commenting on the topic, Communications Minister Ed Vaizey said, “Government will not stand by and let firms plague consumers without consequence which is why we have made the maximum penalty for silent calls 40 times larger to reflect the seriousness of the issue.”

Telecommunications regulator Ofcom, which will be responsible for imposing fines, has welcomed the move, saying it could now put the massive fine into action in case of violation of law.

However, long-time campaigner against silent calls, David Hickson, said that the changes would not curb the problem because the watchdog could take action against only those firms that would breach its rules, and its rules allow up to 3 per cent of call made to be silent.