ICO continues its crackdown on illegal marketing texts and emails (UK)

A Bradford-based bank and a London marketing company are among the latest businesses to receive hefty fines from the Information Commissioner’s Office for distributing hundreds of thousands of emails and texts without the consent of the recipients.

‘Vanquis Bank Limited: Monetary Penalty Notice’ explains how the bank was fined £75,000 for failing to take responsibility for obtaining ‘clear and specific consent’ from contacts on marketing lists obtained from other organisations and used to send 870,849 spam texts and 620,000 spam emails promoting its credit card.

A fine was imposed earlier this year on a related firm, Provident Personal Credit Limited also of Bradford, for sending spam texts and the ICO has issued ‘Vanquis Bank Limited: Enforcement Notice’ ordering the Bank to ensure its practices comply with the law.

‘Xerpla Limited: Monetary Penalty Notice’ relates how the London marketing company was fined £50,000 by the ICO for sending nearly 1.26 million spam emails promoting products and services ranging from dog food to wine, competitions and boilers on behalf of other firms without having the right consents.

The investigations were sparked by complaints from exasperated recipients. ‘Nuisance calls and messages’ is an interactive ICO site that links to further information and enables complaints to be made quickly and easily about

  • spam texts
  • telesales calls
  • automated calls
  • spam emails
  • silent or abandoned calls
  • spam calls and messages
  • faxes

It also outlines the protection that may be available for whistleblowers.

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