The Kitchen Scrappage/Recycling Scheme (cold call scam)

They’re at it again – cold-calling households (or numbers they think are households) with recorded messages from abroad. If you hang up they are pretending this means you would like to hear more, and call back from the UK (judging by the accent) but withholding their CLI. They do this to avoid prosecution  under the  Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003. They’re also not prepared to give any contact details when asked. They are obviously working a con.

Their choice of name suggests they’re connected with official government initiatives such as the widely publicised boiler and car scrappage schemes, but there’s no such scheme in reality.

So what’s their con? Are they trying to pressure sell dodgy kitchens? Or obtain personal details for sale for marketing purposes? This is what the Information Commissioner’s Office think. Certainly, if they were trying to sell kitchens they’d be able to at least tell you which company they were calling from. I’ve just tied the low-life calling me in knots on that one. “Contact details?”, “No, but are you interested in a new kitchen.”, “I might be, but I can’t buy one from anyone without contact details, can I?”, “Er….”

Previously I’d listened longer to the spiel, and they were asking details about your existing kitchen, and then moving on to household income and other dodgy stuff. I had to lie to keep them talking, as they were calling the office and we don’t have that kind of kitchen.

These people are not complying with the TPS block-lists, and going to some trouble to avoid prosecution for cold-calling. I doubt they’re legitimate in any way, but the foregoing is enough to demonstrate that you can’t trust them. The ICO doesn’t have a number trace to go on, but complain anyway (on this link) and leave them to do the leg-work with better resources.


5 Replies to “The Kitchen Scrappage/Recycling Scheme (cold call scam)”

  1. Unfortunately, the TPS blocklist doesn’t physically block anything. The good guys cross reference their lists against it and don’t call anyone who appears. I’ve seen this from both sides of the fence, and they’re pretty hot about it. If they do get caught bothering a TPS number it’s a bigger stick to hit them with.

    The bad guys obviously couldn’t care less, and until the branch of Ofcom that’s currently charged with stamping this stuff gets hold of them, the big stick doesn’t do any good. Expecially when they’re outside the EU.

    Telecoms companies (i.e. BT) cry plenty of croccodile tears over this one. They’re making lots of money setting up overseas call centres, supposedly to take advantage of the cheap labour but we all know that it’s not just the EU working time directive and minimum wage rules they’re dodging.

  2. I had one of these calls this week. Pressed 2 to get someone to call me back, which they did the following day. When I repeatedly asked why they were calling me when I’m registered on TPS they hung up.

  3. Had one of these calls earlier this week. You have to press 2 to get more info then you are told that someone will phone you back.

    When that person rang back they called me by my name, spoke in a Scottish accent, were very polite, but would not give their name, company name, or anything. He promised to take me off the contact list when I said I would sue them, as I was on preference phone list.

    When you work nights and have just got off to sleep they are the last thing you want.

    1. I received the same cold calling telephone call yesterday (Sunday) 18/02/2015 at 8.30pm…! The Scottish bloke would not give me his address or telephone number, but would only state that the company was called the ‘Kitchen Recycling Company’. I’m registered with TPS, but this, and amny other calls, get through to my number without problem it seems.
      I told him I was going to let the Police know about his annoying calls…not that this phased or bothered him at all.

      1. The TPS doesn’t physically block calls, unfortunately. It’s just a list that legitimate callers cross-reference their lists on, and if you number appears they won’t call you. I’ve seen this from the other side of the fence, and the good guys are very hot about never calling a TPS registered number. It’s a big stick to hit them with if they’re caught.

        But there are exceptions. If you already have a relationship with the company, or have expnressed an interest in being called by them, then that’s not a “cold call”, and that’s okay. See other articles hereabouts how this can be used as a loop-hole, By pressing ‘2’ you’re giving them persmission to call you anyway, The initial call probably comes from outsude the EU, and is therefore exempt from compliance.

        The telephone companies (i.e. British Telecom) cry croccodile tears over this one. They’re making lots of money setting up the out-of-EU call centres.

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