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Spam complaints rise 43% in UK
In the year to March, 2012, the Information Commissioner's Office in the UK received over 7,000 complaints spam and other unsolicited electronic marketing - a big rise on the previous year.
Spam emails, automated telephone calls, unwanted mobile text messages and live cold calls by phone are dogging the British public.
The number of complaints received under the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations rose 43% year-on-year to reach 7,095 in the twelve months to March, 2012. Previously, the Information Commissioner's Office received fewer than 5,000 complaints were received.
Automated telephone calls generated the most complaints (35%) followed by unwanted text messages on mobile devices (29%), live phone calls (19%) and email (14%).
However, none of the cases reported resulted in any sort of consequence for the companies involved. In fact, of the received complaints the Information Commissioner's Office deemed just 11% worthy of investigation. The rest were classed as "made too early" or simply "ineligible".
In January, the Information Commissioner's Office was given the power to fine companies up to $780,000 (£500,000) for significant offences and improved their ability to better investigate spam complaints.
"We are working to identify the operators responsible," said Information Commissioner Christopher Graham. "The ICO has executed search warrants at a number of sites across the UK linked to companies we believe are breaking the law. We have also set up an online reporting mechanism on our website that allows people to report any marketing texts or calls from unidentified senders."
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