The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has fined a Swansea-based business £130,000 for breaching laws that prevent cold calling about pensions.
CPS Advisory was fined after an ICO investigation found the company called 106,987 people ‘without lawful authority’ between January and April 2019.
Under laws introduced in 2019 after a campaign by IFA Darren Cooke, it is illegal to call people about their pensions unless a firm is regulated, is the trustee or manager of a pension scheme, or has obtained permission to call those people beforehand.
Andy Curry, head of investigations at the ICO, said pension cold calling ‘can cause real distress and even significant financial hardship to often vulnerable people’ and lead to them losing their pensions.
‘This company clearly flouted the law when they should have known better. Businesses making direct marketing calls are responsible for understanding their responsibilities under the legislation, ignorance is no excuse,’ he added.
Economic secretary to the Treasury John Glen said the fine ‘should act as a warning to others that pensions cold calling is unacceptable, and those found flouting the rules will be held to account’.
Reports of unauthorised firms have been on the rise. Yesterday the FCA revealed that it received a record number last year.