Direct Selling

Department for Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 1st October 2015.

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Photo of Kate Green Kate Green Shadow Minister (Equalities Office) (Women and Equalities)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what progress he has made on preventing unwanted and nuisance telephone calls.

Photo of Ed Vaizey Ed Vaizey Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy (Jointly with Department for Business, Innovation and Skills), Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy (Jointly with Department for Culture Media and Sport)

Substantial progress has been made to tackle nuisance calls. This has included ensuring improved information & signposting for consumers wanting to report nuisance calls. In addition we have increase powers for the regulators. Ofcom’s monetary penalty powers increased from £50,000 to £2 million in September 2010. In July 2011, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) was equipped with a new monetary penalty power of £500,000. Previously this was £5,000.

In July 2014, Ofcom was empowered to share relevant information with the ICO that it acquired about companies breaching the regulations. And more recently, the legal threshold was lowered for the ICO on 6 April 2015, making it easier for them to take enforcement action, including issuing monetary penalties.

The Government is continuing to work to ensure protection of consumers from unwanted and nuisance calls.

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