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The Premium Calls Scandal

Did you know that customer calls to the DVLA helped them to bank £3.4 million last year, from their 0870 numbers? Did you know that Admiral Insurance of Cardiff also benefitted from their 0870 numbers? Others who benefitted from premium calls include Tiscali, British Gas and Barclays Bank to name but a few.

These are just two examples of how the premium calls sector is raking in millions of pounds each year from consumer calls. The sector has been under scrutiny for some time although it has taken Which? magazine to expose the scandal, even though it is all perfectly legal and above board.

The problem which many consumer groups have over these calls is the fact that for many people there is no other choice, they have no other option to get the information and help which they require. Services which for many years were free, and many people still believe they are, have suddenly transformed into substantial income streams for many companies.

OFCOM, the industry regulator, has been trying to resolve the situation with the likes of the DVLA but a planned move to non-premium phone lines has again been delayed – allowing the service to bank yet more money from consumers. To many people this is yet another example of the hidden cost of life in the UK.....

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