Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Fury as woman receives private, non-sales phone call

By Colin Allcabs, Consumer Correspondent

There was widespread anger across Suffolk today when a woman revealed she had received a private phone call from a member of her family.

Tracy McDougal, from Halesworth, was sitting at home watching television at 8.30pm on Friday when her house telephone rang for the 17th time that evening.

But she was shocked to discover it was her sister, Beryl from Southampton, and not a sales call.

Like everyone else, Tracy, 35, is used to a reassuring constant stream of calls selling payment protection compensation, solar panels and personal injury claims, so getting a phone call from someone she actually knew was an upsetting jolt.

“How can this be allowed to happen?” wailed Tracy, who works in a bacon factory. “We all know phones are meant to be used only by persistent cold callers.

“I don’t know what Beryl was thinking of – it’s not as though she had anything interesting to say.”

Tracy McDougal chatting to a double glazing salesman
Tracy is now considering making a complaint to the OFCOM, the telecoms watchdog. “Let’s just say Beryl won’t be ringing me again. I had a call from a nice man from India selling stock investments, and he said he had tried earlier but my phone was engaged. It’s so annoying for him.

“It just goes to show what a nuisance private calls are.”

A spokesman for OFCOM said Suffolk residents worried about nuisance private phone calls should sign up with their free telephone preference service, which blocks calls from friends and family.

“It’s a free service and it can save you hours of frustration, 24/7.”

Mrs McDougal’s local MP, Suffolk Coastal’s Terese White-Coffey, said she would be writing to OFCOM to demand action.

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