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to be hoping to be blacklisted soon

(183 Posts)
hopingnothopping Fri 17-May-13 12:25:10

Despite being registered with the TPS, I have had a spate of cold callers lately: people saying they are from Microsoft and want to repair my Windows computer (a common fraud), and others telling me that they have £x with my name on it due to mis-selling of PPI. I have never taken out PPI.

I have adopted a new approach which has produced interesting results.

I ask if they have a degree (so far they all have), then what they had hoped to do with their lives when they were younger, whether their mother knows what they do for a job and whether she is proud of them? I then calmly and politely suggest that they look for a job where they can do good and be proud of their work, and hold their heads up high with their families.

I have had the following responses:

Edward: Gosh, yes, I feel dreadful, I need to get another job. (I liked Edward)
William: I am doing this because my country didn't invade your country and take all your wealth 35 years ago but your lot did that to us. I hate the British for what they have done to us (he was full of vitriol that came spewing out)
Sammy: shouted at me to stay out of her life (poor Sammy seemed very stressed but her logic was remarkable when you consider that SHE phoned ME whilst I was in my own kitchen minding my own business).

So AIBU to hope I will soon be blacklisted from these fraudsters' phone lists on the basis that I upset their staff? It seems quite effective.

BTW I wouldn't be this mean to an "honest" cold caller just trying to sell me something but these guys were all working for criminal gangs and must have known it.

EatenByZombies Tue 21-May-13 16:44:35

Just say you were desperate and someone rammed you with a basket in the badder? grin

ComposHat Tue 21-May-13 14:04:33


AKissIsNotAContract Tue 21-May-13 13:05:27

I did genuinely piss myself in the street last December, do you think I have a claim?

It has to be an accident that wasn't your fault.

KhaosandKalamity Tue 21-May-13 13:03:23

I don't know about the UK but the CommerceCommission here suggests trying to get as much information as possible, names, address, phone numbers, and reporting them. The more information they can collect about these scammers the better chance they have of stopping them. I always explain that I am busy and ask if they have a number I can all back on, or an office that I can pop in to. Usually they will not answer, but every little bit helps.

ComposHat Sun 19-May-13 22:24:23

Anothr one would be "yes I had a wee wee in debenhams. It was a accident"

I did genuinely piss myself in the street last December, do you think I have a claim?

Letitsnow9 Sun 19-May-13 22:18:34

We get so many 'virus on your computer' calls, it's our families entertainment now to see how long we can keep them on the line, we tend to give up after 5 mins. I've gone on about how proud their parents must be of them (in a sweet voice) but never asked them why they did it. Weird reactions you have had so far, I'm surprised they didn't just hang up. We had one and when my dad said he was a scammer and hung up, the scammer rang straight back to say he's not!

Fairylea Sun 19-May-13 20:02:27

True network guy.... I have a lot of time on my hands to post here smile so I wouldn't want to waste any of that engaging with cold callers and trying to find out their background. A simple no thanks and putting the phone down straight away does the trick!

JenaiMorris Sun 19-May-13 19:05:29

It's my precious time being wasted by random scammers that makes me sympathetic to the OP.

Several calls a day, from people who are insistent at best, abusive at worst... That is something I don't have enough time for.

NetworkGuy Sun 19-May-13 18:02:16

But, Fairylea, some could argue that most people who post here (excepting the lovely staff at MNHQ, of course) have far too much time on their hands, just as easily smile

Fairylea Sun 19-May-13 13:19:38

You have WAY too much time on your hands op.

sweetestcup Sun 19-May-13 12:41:41

Ethel I said the OP hadnt been particuarly clear about what kind of 'cold caller' she was talking about

The OP wrote this * BTW I wouldn't be this mean to an "honest" cold caller just trying to sell me something but these guys were all working for criminal gangs and must have known it* - seems pretty clear to me!

greenformica Sun 19-May-13 12:15:25

we have had the same dodgy scam calls and i wish I'd thought of something

FasterStronger Sun 19-May-13 09:47:19

hoping what you have done is absolutely fine.

SolomanDaisy Sun 19-May-13 09:21:47

I suppose you might be right SDTG. Though I think they're probably told that they will help people to get back money they wouldn't otherwise have. The ones who are taking payments upfront are breaking the rules, so I guess they must have more idea that they're doing something wrong. There are probably a mix of people doing it, some who don't care whether they are scamming others and some who have taken an awful job because they are desperate. The economic situation and benefits changes are making people do things they wouldn't ordinarily choose.

EatenByZombies Sun 19-May-13 01:05:05

YAB a bit U. Take the higher road and hang up or screen calls, there's no need to be rude no matter who it is calling.

...are not actively choosing to participate in criminal activity. It's a shit job...^

I am sorry but I have to disagree, to some extent, with this statement. If a telesales operative is being told to lie to the people they are calling, then they must realise that there is something dodgy going on. If they are telling someone that there is a PPI refund of £XXX owed to them, when that information is not in front of them, then they know they are lying, and this must ring alarm bells.

If they are asking over the phone for people's bank account details, they must realise this is dodgy.

People who are doing this are not just in a shit job, they are actively participating in scamming innocent people, and that is wrong.

Borntobeamum Sat 18-May-13 17:31:51

We get Indian or Pakistani callers saying Hello my name is Norman/jack/Susan/Roger.
I ask to speak to their supervisor as they are clearly masquerading as someone else and that is NOT their real name.
I then hang up and carry on with my life.

NetworkGuy Sat 18-May-13 17:15:01

Hope problems are behind you cory, and your DH is getting over it, and glad you were alert when the scammers called back.

NetworkGuy Sat 18-May-13 17:10:46

are not actively choosing to participate in criminal activity. It's a shit job.

I acknowledge the people are not active criminals, and while it's a rotten job, if the people they work for (an agency, getting commission or some other regular payment) from a PPI firm is flouting the TPS then I don't care how rotten the job is, the call should not reach me, and I will do my damndest to get them stopped.

If that also means finding the name of the person in that grotty job and they need to change job, so be it, as they must surely {however bad the situation is} know that the calls are annoying (by the reaction of recipients). Really is no good trying to defend them, when the TPS was set up because marketing firms know the hatred such calls generate. And some {no doubt British} bosses have set up overseas operations to get round the rules.

If there was some way to force BT to pass the caller's number I would (the reason they show only "INTERNATIONAL" is because someone in BT has to decide if they 'trust' the numbers sent from each overseas country. If they do, they could show the number. If they don't they hide it).

I'd be happy for EU regulation on forcing telecom firms to pass the correct number, which would effectively shut down 'boiler room' operations in Spain, etc, as those nuisance callers would/could be blocked, not just at subscriber level (WTF should a recipient have to buy a box to help limit the calls!), but for all incoming calls to the UK, in the same way that ICSTIS and OFCOM/ICO can close down and/or fine services.

NetworkGuy Sat 18-May-13 16:56:05

TheCutOfYourJib - piprabbit you couldn't make a call to your bank if the original caller hadn't hung up, impossible.

It would not work on a mobile, but it would be relatively simple in terms of electronics for someone to connect a unit to give you the sound of a dialtone, and stop once you had sent the first tone.

Only a few people (using loop disconnect, ie "pulse dial") would know it wasn't from the exchange.

Most would assume that having dialled the number and had a half ring or short period of ringing that it was their bank. Obviously you expect your bank to give its name, but a recording (eg about a high volume of calls because of a systems crash) might distract you enough from guessing, especially if (like me) you have not talked to them on the phone for 10 to 15 years.

{I opened my HSBC [Midland then] account in 1984, and they have not seen me at 'my' branch for over 20 years... my account with Barclays was opened in 1979 and that branch has not seen me in at least 27 years. I've lived 200++ miles away since August 1989.}

cory Sat 18-May-13 16:39:03

Dh was very nearly taken in by one of the Microsoft scammers because they caught him at a time when he was run down and vulnerable; he wasn't thinking straight and nearly believed them. Once they realised he was wavering they rang back in the middle of the night to catch him off-guard. They got me instead....

Do I feel concerned about the scammers? Well, quite frankly I felt more concerned about dh who was nearly in tears at the thought that he might have laid the family finances at the mercy of a bunch of scammers at a time when we were already struggling with other problems.

ZiaMaria Sat 18-May-13 16:36:06

I had one of those Microsoft callers, asking 'how my computer is running at present'. Being forewarned about the scam, I told her that I don't have a computer. She was astonished and didn't know what to do...

teacherwith2kids Sat 18-May-13 16:28:51

Mine always ask for 'Mrs TW2K'. As my 'official' name - I don't use it for work, but I do for all banks, bills etc - is 'Dr TW2K', I reply - with exact truth - that sadly Mrs TW2K [my MiL, the only Mrs TW2K in the family] died nearly 10 yars ago.

For the only other repeat offender - an ink cartridges manufacturer - I got hold of the real company e-mail and number via some scam-reporting Google site, and gave them merry hell.

It's stopped.

SolomanDaisy Sat 18-May-13 16:24:00

The people who run PPI firms can best be described as scum. I wouldn't defend them at all. But in general the people who work for them, UK or abroad, are not actively choosing to participate in criminal activity. It's a shit job.

NetworkGuy Sat 18-May-13 16:22:43

Junk mail by comparison has declined significantly, probably because even with alternatives to Royal Mail and the discounts applied for bulk mail, the cost of printing and delivery must make a hole in 40p per item, and is seen as too costly, when tens of millions of text messages can be sent very cheaply (I know, I get plenty, and report them {with the sender's number, to 7726 [spells 'SPAM]' which is available for most if not all networks}).

Some years ago (when internet access was still via dial-up modem), one morning, I got 44,000 unsolicited e-mail messages, 4000 from each of 11 firms. It was time consuming to get rid of them, and I also ran the risk of losing my internet account (because Freeserve had a limit on how much e-mail you were allowed to store... luckily they must have arrived after the nightly check on space used).

I wrote back to each firm, warning them to remove me, and if further mail messages arrived, I would charge an admin fee of 5 GBP per message for reading and deleting it. I received some pretty humble apologies, but these firms were victims of fraud, because they had bought mail lists from some person/firm which had generated 4000 e-mail addresses on one of my domains, and were making money out of them by fraudulently claiming they had 'opted in' to receive marketing...

The 11 firms sold all sorts of different products so I assume the fraudsters were selling junk data to anyone who was dumb enough to pay... I mentioned something to that effect in my e-mail, so they would not be tempted to buy lists in future.

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