Mobile phone users can send a simple text message to opt out of unsolicited sales and marketing calls from today.
The ‘text-to-register’ service, launched by the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) and Ofcom, enables mobile phone users to add their number to the UK’s official ‘do not call’ database by texting ‘TPS’ and their email address to 85095.
It is illegal for organisations to make unsolicited sales and marketing calls to numbers registered with the TPS, unless they have a person’s consent to do so.
Raising awareness of the TPS
According to Ofcom research, only half (48%) of people familiar with the TPS are aware that mobile numbers can be registered, compared to almost nine in 10 (88%) for landline phone numbers.
This helps explain why only 2.9 million mobile numbers (around 3%) are registered on the TPS database, compared with 18.5 million landline numbers (around 85%).
By introducing the quick and easy text-to-register process, the TPS and Ofcom aim to raise awareness of the preference service among mobile users and drive registrations.
How ‘text-to-register’ works
To register, mobile customers simply text ‘TPS’, followed by their email address to the shortcode 85095. They will receive a text reply from the TPS confirming their number has been successfully added to its database.
Registrants should notice a gradual reduction in unsolicited sales and marketing voice calls after a few days, although it can take up to 28 days for the service to become fully effective.
A study commissioned by Ofcom and the Information Commissioner’s Office found people registered with the TPS saw a reduction in the monthly volume of live sales or marketing calls received of around a third (31%). Registering with the TPS, however, does not prevent spam text messages.
Source: Ofcom 2016, read more here.