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Which? urges clampdown on unsolicited calls and texts

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By John Glenday | Reporter

March 19, 2013 | 2 min read

Consumer rights group Which? has called on the government to toughen up its regulation of unsolicited communications following a rise in the number of reported nuisance calls and texts.

The watchdog estimates that seven in ten people receive unsolicited calls and four in ten have received an unwanted text over the past three months.

Much of the blame for their spread has been pinned on personal injury and payment protection insurance claims industry.

Complaints have also been levelled at the car insurance industry where one in four of its members report being contacted by a claims management company within three months, half of whom were contacted within a week.

At present AA, Admiral, Direct Line, eSure, Lloyds TSB, Tesco and Zurich all take fees for referring their customers details on to claims management firms.

This practice will be banned from April 2013 however.

Richard Lloyd, executive director of Which?, said: "Unwanted calls or texts are not just a nuisance, they can be intrusive and distressing. Many of us have been bombarded with spurious claims of PPI or injury compensation, and people are telling us they are totally fed up with this nuisance and want to see action.

"We want the regulators to work together to properly police and punish those responsible for unwanted calls and texts, using the existing law. If they are unwilling or unable to enforce the rules, the government should step in."

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