I hate telemarketing. I get spammed through my email, I get spammed through my letterbox and now I'm getting spammed through my mobile phone.
Today, part way through my training course, my phone rang. I was expecting a call from my bank so I excused myself and answered the call. I got cut off because of the poor reception so I rang the number back. "You have been called by Telefocus. It isn't important, we will call you back."
I am having problems at the moment with Carphone Warehouse. My wife took out two phones on a contract with Carphone Warehouse about 2 years ago. She uses one and I use the other. Not long ago I started receiving phone calls from companies wanting to upgrade my phone. Where did they get my number from? None of them would tell me, fobbing me off all the time and even cutting me off mid-sentence when I complained.
Anyway, by my amazing powers of deduction I figured out that either T-Mobile or Carphone Warehouse had been passing my number on. I phoned T-Mobile and they said it wasn't them. I phoned Carphone Warehouse and they said it wasn't them. I phoned T-Mobile back again and they said it definitely wasn't them but they would investigate it. I phoned Carphone Warehouse back again and discovered that they had flagged my account for marketing - something we specifically said we didn't want when we took the phones out. The flunky removed the marketing flag but refused to tell me what they were going to do about the companies they had already sold the details on to without our premission and, thereofre, illegally.
I phoned back T-Mobile and told them what Carphone Warehouse had done and they said they would get their dealer support people onto it. I was pretty pissed off so I phoned Carphone Warehouse back to complain and was told that the marketing flag was for internal marketing and that my details would not have been provided to external companies.
Now this wouldn't be a problem if it wasn't for the fact that Carphone Warehouse owns shit loads of companies so me getting phone calls from 3 different companies in one week is, technically, internal marketing.
Back to Telefocus - are they part of Carphone Warehouse? My investigations turned up no clues so I took the bull by the horns and phoned them. No, they aren't part of Carphone Warehouse and Carphone Warehouse aren't one of their client's. So where did they get my phone number from? They can't tell me unless I phone them in business hours. So I will. Tomorrow. And if it turns out that Carphone Warehouse have sold my details on then I'm going to complain properly through OFCOM, the Data Protection Registrar and T-Mobile.
I'll end this with some interesting snippets of information from my investigations. The domain name for Telefocus apparently belongs to Silverfir Limited. This company doesn't exist but it used to - it was the previous trading name of Telefocus until 1997 when it changed its name. As there is no such legal entity in existence by the name of Silverfir Limited, and hasn't been since 1997, how can the domain name be owned by Silverfir Limited? I've asked their domain registrar that question and told them I want to buy the domain. Their tax returns are also a month late and they are such a small company (despite delusions of grandieur on their website) that they are classified as a small business by HMRC and only have to file tax returns every other year.
Lets see what tomorrow brings ...