And with technological advances making it easier to make large volumes of calls, including automated robocalls, there are few barriers in place to prevent spammers, especially from outside the UK.
Green Smartphones decided to research just how many nuisance, spam, and robocalls people in the UK receive, to understand the extent of the problem in 2022.
The research found:
- Nationally, Brits will receive 4.03 BILLION nuisance calls this year
- 56 percent of people receive nuisance calls every single week
- 83 percent of people receive at least one nuisance call a month
- The average person receives 6.04 nuisance calls every month
According to the research, more than half (56 percent) of people either don’t have their telephone number registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) or don’t know if their number is registered.
“The Telephone Preference Service is our national do-not-call register in the UK,” says Tom Paton, founder of Green Smartphones.
“If your number is on the TPS, by law, UK companies can’t call you out of the blue. And if you do get an unsolicited call, you can make a complaint to the TPS, provided your phone number has been on their list for at least 28 days.”
“If you’re not on the TPS, or you’re not sure if your number is registered, you should go to their website and check. It’s free to add a landline or mobile number, and once on the do-not-call list, your number stays there indefinitely.”
However, many people who are registered with the TPS still receive unsolicited phone calls, especially from overseas operators who are unconcerned about telecommunications regulations in the UK.
“If you keep receiving calls or texts from the same number, block it, and report the number to your landline or mobile provider,” Paton adds.
“Each mobile network has a number you can forward the spammer’s details to, and they’ll investigate it. With your landline, you’ll normally have to fill out an online form on your broadband provider’s website to report the number.”
“The problem is, nuisance callers are quite sophisticated – they’ll often use something called ‘caller ID rotation’, meaning they can call you from different phone numbers, or they might begin calling you from a private number. In this case, on your mobile, you can install an app like TrueCaller, which has a database of spam phone numbers that incoming calls are screened against.
“And on your landline, you can contact your broadband provider and get them to turn on call screening – with BT, this service is called ‘BT Call Protect’ for example. Normally, call screening is free, but how it works depends on the company you’re with.”
|Provider||Service name||Cost||How it works|
|BT||Call Protect||Free||Blocks spammers on BT’s list, can also block other numbers|
|TalkTalk||CallSafe||Free||Calls will be screened (asked for their name), can also block other numbers|
|Sky||Talk Shield||Free||Blocks robo/automated callers, can block up to 1000 numbers|
|EE||Call Plus||£5 per month||Block up to ten numbers, block anonymous numbers|
|Virgin Media||Anonymous Caller Rejection||Free||Blocks anonymous calls|
|Shell Energy Broadband||Anonymous Caller Reject||Free||Blocks anonymous calls|
|Plusnet||Call Protect||Free||Blocks spammers on Plusnet’s list, can also block other numbers|
|Zen||Call Screening Feature Pack||Free||Block up to ten numbers|
The research was conducted by OnePoll in October 2022 among 2000 UK adults.