Ofcom fines Barclaycard £50k

LONDON - UK consumer regulator Ofcom has fined Barclaycard £50,000 for the most serious and persistent case of silent calls ever encountered. Automated systems at the call centres of the UK credit card business were responsible for dialling far more numbers than could be dealt with by staff, causing nuisance silent calls.

Rules introduced in 2006 demand abandoned calls must carry a short message identifying the originator and must account for no more than 3% of all live calls made each day. Ofcom declined to disclose Barclaycard's silent call rate but described it as substantially more than in the previous case of 16,000 at Abbey National. The regulator's investigation took place between October 2006 and May 2007.

Barclaycard has apologised for its abuse of the rules.

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