Last January, hundreds of Gazette readers contacted us through social-networking site Facebook to complain about an avalanche of late-night, nuisance phonecalls.
It quickly became clear that the problem was widespread and those who had received the calls were very angry and upset.
Whoever was making the robocalls had no compassion – they targeted the elderly, those living alone, families with young children, no one was spared.
It prompted a Gazette campaign, Stop Nuisance Robocalls, which called upon Information Commissioner Christopher Graham to tighten the law on companies making the calls.
The crusade took us to Parliament, where we presented Mr Graham with a dossier of evidence and a petition calling for a clampdown. Yesterday, we received the good news that firms will be punished for cold-calling if it can be proved a call caused ‘substantial damage or substantial distress’.
This is a major step forward and we’d like to thank everyone who signed our petition or told us their story as part of the campaign. You all helped to make a difference.
Our thanks also go to Sir Alan Beith MP, who guided us throughout the campaign and set up the meeting with the information Commissioner.