Spalding councillor urges public to join national fight against nuisance phone calls

Coun Roger Gambba-Jones is highlighting a national campaign to end the misery of nuisance calls. Photo (TIM WILSON): SG090318-116TW
Coun Roger Gambba-Jones is highlighting a national campaign to end the misery of nuisance calls. Photo (TIM WILSON): SG090318-116TW
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A leading Spalding councillor is backing a national campaign to stop the public being bombarded by nuisance calls and texts.

District council portfolio holder Roger Gambba-Jones hopes the consumer group, Which?, who are working with the Government to bring in a ban, will succeed in ending the menace.

So far, Which? has received more than half-a-million signatures on its petition and is appealing for more people to sign up and help them reach 600,000.

Schemes, such as the free sign-up Telephone Preference Service (TPS), are there to help besieged residents but some international callers and scammers are now claiming to be from the TPS in order to dupe unsuspecting victims.

A warning was posted on a Gosberton Facebook group on Thursday by a resident who received an international scam call asking her to “update” her TPS.

She said: “The caller asked for the expiry date of my Visa card, then the last three digits of my number. Needless to say, after a choice word, I put the phone down.”

Coun Gambba-Jones told the Free Press: “That’s a disgrace because the TPS is a free service and they don’t phone you, they don’t contact you.

“There are opportunistic people out there who will seek every opportunity to exploit everybody and anybody.”

Coun Gambba-Jones is worried about scammers preying on the elderly – who may lose cash and feel so foolish afterwards that they daren’t tell their families – but also knows of young people who have come close to being duped.

At one stage, he was getting up to six unsolicited international calls a day and posted a Twitter link to the Which? petition on Wednesday after getting four “silent” calls within two hours. That link included the top ten nuisance international call numbers.

Coun Gammba-Jones believes the battle will only be won once calls are intercepted and blocked at telephone exchanges.

He says despite the TPS and the various number blocking systems available, the nuisance calls still come through.

Coun Gambba-Jones said: “These companies always seem to find a way around it, especially when they have got automated systems.”

You can support the national campaign and sign the petition at www.which.co.uk/campaigns/nuisance-calls-and-texts/

The Which? site also gives advice on how to block unsolicited calls and a link to the Telephone Preference Service.

• Are your plagued by nuisance calls? Email your letter to our editor: jeremy.ransome@iliffepublishing.co.uk

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