A Scottish marketing firm has been fined £60,000 for making 1.6 million unsolicited phone calls to householders in a bid to sell solar panels and green energy equipment.
Omega Marketing Services was found to have made the calls using the same phone numbers as a Manchester company which was also hit with a fine earlier this year for making similar calls. Both firms were deemed to be breaking the law for calling people who were registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) and who had not given their permission to receive calls.
Omega, which lists Stewart Kenneth William Murdoch, 33, as its sole director, became the subject of an investigation by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) after enforcement officers realised the links to the numbers used by Manchester-based MyIML, which is being dissolved, according to Companies House documents.
It was also run by a Scottish director, Linda Montgomery, who registers a Glasgow home address on official documents and is listed alongside Murdoch as a director of Glasgow-based Infynity Marketing, dissolved in January this year.
A total of 177 people complained to the ICO about Omega’s tactics, claiming they felt “victimised”.
Ken Macdonald, head of ICO Regions, said: “Omega Marketing Services Ltd had no right to make these calls and, in doing so, they caused frustration, anger and upset.
“That’s why we took action. And the people they were calling took action too – they took the time and trouble to complain and it makes a difference. It helps us identify patterns, trace hidden numbers and build up a case against rogue firms.”
He added: “Ultimately, when people complain, we have a better chance of tracking down the rogue companies and stopping the nuisance.”
One householder said: “I feel victimised and like these people are picking on me personally.”
Another said: “If someone knocked on your door with such regularity, they’d get arrested for harassment.”
Calls made to Mr Murdoch’s Glasgow home address, where the company is registered, were unanswered.