UK DMA Warns Against Telephone Protection Agency

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Following consumer complaints, the Direct Marketing Authority is warning the public about a company called the Telephone Protection Agency, which is charging a fee to register consumers for the United Kingdom's no-call list.

"Unlike the official Telephone Preference Service, which is free to register with, the Telephone Protection Agency is charging consumers to sign up to their service, claiming they can remove the consumer's number from telemarketing lists," said John Bridgeman, chairman of the Direct Marketing Authority. The authority is an independent body established by the Direct Marketing Association (UK) Ltd.

"The Direct Marketing Authority is extremely concerned that consumers may be persuaded to pay this unnecessary fee, believing that they are registering with the well-established Telephone Preference Service," he said. "They will then not receive the service they are expecting, thereby damaging the reputation upheld by the Telephone Preference Service at present."

It is unlawful in the UK to make unsolicited direct marketing calls to individuals who have indicated they do not want to receive such calls. Consumers can do this either by contacting companies directly and asking them not to phone, or by registering with a central service such as the TPS to stop all such calls.

Administered by the DMA (UK) Ltd., the TPS consumer file is sent to companies registered with the TPS. More than 3.5 million consumers are registered with the TPS.

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