In Britain, we’re subjected to 4,200 cold calls and text every minute. That’s 2.2 billion cold calls in the last year alone, says research reported by The Times. And the vast majority of these calls are simply a scam.
It’s no wonder then that 57% of people in the UK say that cold calls and nuisance messages are the worst part of owning a phone. So, to help you get rid of cold callers, we’re working with True Solicitors LLP so you can know what to tell cold callers to get them to leave you alone.
Common cold calls
Firstly, let’s explore the most common types of cold call.
With 6 million calls and messages from PPI (payment protection insurance), pension, and insurance cold calls every day, these make up the most common types of cold call according to studies.
Calls and texts from companies claiming to be experts in holiday sickness claims or injury claims totalled 895 million calls and texts. Don’t accept these calls; if you need one, seek a proper accident at work solicitor! Those over the age of 65 found themselves experiencing the majority of the calls — posing the question: are companies like this preying on older people who are likely to be more vulnerable? Here are a few tricks you can use to combat cold-calling…
Waste their time instead!
With strict time averages to hit, salespeople hate it when a customer wastes their time. They call to get you instantly on board with some product or service that they’re selling, but telling them you’re not interested at the start of the call won’t achieve anything. They will first mention the product that they are selling and you must act interested at the start, they’ll start their sales patter and after they’ve put the effort into doing that — just admit that you’re not really interested and admit that you were just wasting their time. Remember that they have targets — they’ll not want to ring your number again!
Calls may be recorded from both sides
Here’s a useful script to keep handy next time you get a cold call. Say something along the lines of: “Hello, just to let you know that I will be recording this phone call as you’re not complying with the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations of 2003. This legislation has been put in place to help restrict marketing methods through cold-calling, unsolicited texts, emails, and faxes”. The good thing about this trick is that they’ve probably ended the call after the first sentence. Don’t be afraid to try this one!
The goal of every cold call is to get your money. Tell them that you’re an undischarged bankrupt and they will put the phone done quicker than you could imagine. By saying this, you’re telling them that you are unable to obtain credit beyond a certain limit without informing the creditor of your status. Of course, this does not exist in your case — but they don’t know that.
Inform them that you’re a criminal
This is a good one for different reasons. If the scammer is telling you you’ve won a free holiday, tell them you’ve got a travel injunction and your passport has been revoked. Or, tell them you’re awaiting your trial and plan to plead guilty.
Speak a different language entirely
Chances are, the cold caller is expecting to hear English. Don’t conform to what they want! If you can speak another language, try doing that, and as they won’t be able to understand what you’re saying, they will hang up. If you don’t know another language, make it up and this will leave them even more confused than what they originally were.
Enjoy a home free of cold calls! It’s also a good decision to block their phone number, however as they change frequently — this not be a viable option. Some phones have the ability to put callers through an answer machine first, where they have to notify the person they are ringing who they are and then press several buttons. Cold-callers will not want to go through this much effort.