TalkTalk has moved to help customers avoid nuisance calls by making all landline privacy calling features completely free. The company claimed that this was the first and only ISP to do so.
It said that in order for customers to eschew nuisance, scam and unwanted calls, Last Caller Barring and Anonymous Caller Reject would be free of charge for both new and existing customers. These features are in addition to Caller Display, Withhold Number and 1571 voicemail, which are already free to all its customers.
It said that these features would normally cost as much as £3.70 and £4.50 per month respectively. IT claimed that as a result, TalkTalk customers would save up to £140 a year in comparison to BT.
The ISP pointed to research from Which? that found that one third of people feel intimidated by cold calls and over half are discouraged from picking up their landline. More than eight in ten people have reported that they had received an unsolicited call on their home landline in the past month.
The privacy features include: Withhold Number – this hides your number when making a call so the person you are calling will not see it. This means it won’t appear in caller ID or be available if they use Last Caller ID, ensuring that your identity remains private; Anonymous Caller Reject blocks incoming calls from anyone who withholds their number. This means if anyone tries to call you without displaying their phone number, they’ll automatically hear a busy tone and you won’t be bothered with the call; and Last Caller Barring allows users to block the last number to call or specific numbers of your choice. Now when someone tries to call you from a barred number all they will hear is a busy number and you’ll no longer be disturbed by an unwanted call.
TalkTalk chief executive Dido Harding said nuisance and unwanted calls are a huge source of stress and frustration. “We don’t believe that people should be charged for the privilege of protecting their privacy. Our customers can now benefit from even more free features to help them avoid nuisance calls, helping to make TalkTalk homes even better off,” she said.