A company called TNS Global has been cold calling householders claiming to be conducting market research.
Typically the calls come from number 020 8433 6079, although another variation 020 84334 6079 has been observed.
On the Tellows site people have suggested they were called multiple times despite making it clear the calls were unwanted.
Are They a Legitimate Company?
It appears they are a legitimate company registered at Companies House.
They claim to be a member of the Market Research Society (MRS). Although I could not spot a search for member companies on the MRS site, typing TNS into their general search box appears to suggest this is a company they recognise.
TNS’s own answerphone message suggests you can call Freephone 0500 396999 to verify with the MRS that they are genuine members.
Shouldn’t TPS Should Stop Calls
No. Market research calls are exempt from TPS protection under the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003, so they are allowed to call you.
You cannot use the TPS complaints service to report this kind of call, as these calls are permitted under TPS.
What Can You Do?
Most importantly, instruct them to stop calling you. They are obliged to comply with your request. I emailed them and they responded very promptly; there have been no calls since.
If they ignore your instructions or you wish to take the matter further, here are some other steps you can take:
- Make a formal complaint to the Market Research Society, The Old Trading House, 15 Northburgh Street, London EC1V 0JR. Tel: 0500 396999 (Freephone).
- Complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office.
- Contact your local MP and ask them to push for changes to legislation to prevent market research companies from calling TPS-registered numbers.
Template for Email
Below is the wording I used in my instructions to TNS Global to stop calling me. Feel free to use this as a template:
I have noted some unwanted calls from your company to my home telephone number [Insert Telephone Number].
With this email I am instructing you that these calls:
- Are unsolicited and undesirable.
- Are considered to be nuisance calls.
- Must stop with immediate effect.
You are DENIED consent:
- To use any of my personal data to contact me, including but not limited to my telephone number, postal address, email address and mobile phone number. The sole exception to this is a single email to acknowledge receipt of this email & my instructions regarding my personal data.
- To hold any of my personal data on your systems beyond whatever is strictly necessary to prevent me from being contacted again: all personal data superfluous to that purpose must be deleted from your systems.
- To pass any of my personal data to any third party.
These instructions stand IN PERPETUITY and apply to both the current research you are undertaking as well as all future market research.
Any further calls or other forms of communication from you will be considered a breach of my data privacy instructions and complaints will be made to the Market Research Society & the Information Commissioners Office.