Who’s calling . . .


I got one of those calls again. I may have mentioned before, that I have a policy of not answering a call, if I don’t recognise the number. I work on the basis that if the call is important, then they will either call back or leave a message. I started this policy some years ago, when I got a call, which started with the caller saying “We are sorry to hear about your fatal accident …” Over the past few months, I have had a number of calls starting with the same four digits … 0758. As I understand it, these numbers are allocated to the EE network, but can be transferred to any network

I spoke with a former colleague a day or two ago, who indicated, that these calls are probably from ‘claims experts’, wanting to help me with my claim (that I don’t have.) Another possibility is that they are crooks posing as Amazon couriers. This works on their hope that you are expecting something from Amazon. They tell you that they have tried to deliver a large parcel, but you were not in and as this was the second attempt, there is a charge before they can deliver again. The charge is usually minimal, say £1.00 but it is so they can get your bank details. A third idea is that they are just ‘phone harvesters‘. These ring random numbers and when you answer, it tells the ‘harvester‘ that yours is a live number and can be sold on.

My wife will answer any call that she gets, regardless and laughs at me when I don’t answer. But I think it is better to miss a call than to get scammed.

A good deal …


I have been thinking about changing my mobile supplier for a while now. I’m with Three and have been for a good few years. My most recent contract, was a 12 month deal with 8gb of data and unlimited text and calls for £10.27 a month. The contract formally ended towards the end of last month, so I was looking around the deals that were available to see if I could get a better one.

I came across an advert for a company called TalkMobile and the deal there were offering was, again a 12 month contract with 9gb of data and unlimited text and calls for £9 a month. They were also give the 1st 3 months at £4.50 a month. this worked out at a saving of £28.50 in the first year. It sounded a great deal and all I needed to do was get PAC (Porting Authorisation Code ) from Three and I could keep my same number.

The code was duly requested and I was all ready to change companies. However, within a couple of hours, I got a text message from Three which asked me to get in touch to talk about what they could do to ‘keep me on board’ as they said.

What followed was one of those ‘web-chat’ meetings (which I prefer). The operator wanted to know why, after all these years, was I looking to change? I explained that I wanted a cheaper deal. I explained the contract I had been looking at and asked the question “Can you equal or better that deal?” Very quickly, he came back with two offerings. The 1st was a 12 month contract with unlimited text and calls and 12gb of data for £8.00 a month. Or a similar contract with only 4gb of data for £5.00 a month. Success!

I decided that the 1st option was the best and I agreed. It was explained that when the paper version of the contract came through, It would show a monthly charge of £26.00, but would also show ‘recurring discounts’ of £8.00 and £10.00 in the final details. The new contact doesn’t start until the end of this month as it was explained that I was now into a new month and should have contacted them the week before. But that’s not a problem, so I’m one ‘happy bunny’ as they say.

Accident ? What accident …


I got one of those spam calls this morning. My phone is usually muted during the night, but whilst K*** and R*** have been away, I’ve left the sound on. It was one of those annoying 020xx xxxxxx calls. I don’t usually answer them on the basis that if it is a genuine call, then they’ll either call back or leave a voicemail. However, I was expecting a call or text from the Argos delivery driver for the package I was having delivered (yep it didn’t go in the car!). They had told me that delivery was between 7am and 8pm, but that I would get a call or text before they deliver. The guy in Argos told me that some drivers like to finish early on Saturday, so it would be likely to be early than later.

I heard my phone at around 6:15 and not checking the number just answered it. I knew straight away what kind of call it was when the lady (questionable) at the other end spoke. The recorded voice started with “Hello, sorry to hear about your recent FATAL accident …” It was at that point that I hung up. I still find it funny.

Now that’s annoying …


I’ll give you a little background first. A few years ago, I got a call on my mobile. I didn’t know the number, but as I was expecting to hear from prospective employer, I answered. It turned out to be an automated call from someone wHTC 620ho was ‘… sorry to hear about my accident, and would like to help with my compensation claim …’ There was no accident and therefore no claim. I naively complained to my provider who told me that it was probably a number harvester ie scammers who dial random numbers. If the number answer then they know it’s a live number they can sell. The advice was not answer calls where I did not know the number and that they would eventually stop. The reasoning behind this is that if the call is important, the caller would either leave a voice mail or call again. K*** doesn’t understand this. Her opinion is ‘ …why do you have a phone if you are not going to answer it …?’ I usually say that you don’t open the door if you cannot see who is knocking, to which she hesitantly agrees.

But back to the point of this moan. Last week, I had been in the supermarket, and as I was coming out, my phone rang. As per the norm, I did not know the number so did not answer. A few seconds later I got a ‘New Voice Mail’ message. Now here is where the fun starts. The message explained that they were West Yorkshire Police, and that they had ‘… received an emergency 999 call from my phone and did I still need attention …?’ I had not called the emergency number, and what had happened was that I must have touched tapped 112 (the alternative number) when I put my phone in my pocket at the start of my shopping. I was given a number to ring (101) if the call was not an emergency. This I tried and after about 15 minutes, I managed to get through. I apologised for accidentally calling 112 and the officer said that it happens sometimes, they even have a name for it, calling it ‘Pocket Dialling’ . She thanked me for letting them know.

So why the annoyance. Well that call to the 101 number does not come within the allowed number on my phone contract, because it is what is called a ‘short number’. So basically it cost me £0.51 in call charges to say sorry. However, if I had ignored the original message, I would not have had to pay. I did ask the officer what would have happened if I had not called to explain and she told me nothing … nothing at all. The call would close after a period of time, but nothing would happen.