Burnetts logo

£200,000 fine for Company cold calling

£200,000 fine for Company cold calling

Cold calling 6 million numbers has led to a huge fine for a company.

Home Energy & Lifestyle Management Limited has been fined £200,000 for making automated marketing calls. The Company should have obtained consent from each one of 6 million numbers they called as part of a marketing campaign.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) held that not only were the calls misleading, but that several calls happened on the same day to the same individuals despite their attempts to stop or block the call causing significant distress to individuals.  This distress was more than trivial.

Regulation 19 of Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003 (PECR) governs when and how a company may use an automated calling system using pre-recorded marketing campaigns. It states that a company may only use this form of advertising/marketing when consent from the individual is obtained and that the Company making the call is named in that consent. 

Despite this being the largest fine of its type, £200,000 is a fine of only 30p per call made. The ICO could have fined up to a maximum of £500,000.

About the author

Natalie Ruane profile photo

Natalie Ruane

Natalie is a Partner and leads the Employment Law & HR team and specialises in education.

Published: Thursday 29th October 2015
Categorised: Information Law

All Factsheets