Other issues

Scams and frauds

If you have fallen victim to a scam with a telephone number starting 0871, 070 or 09, you should contact Phone-paid Services Authority, which regulates premium-rate services. You should also contact them if the scam involves premium-rate text messages.

All other scams and frauds should be reported to the UK’s national fraud reporting centre, Action Fraud UK.

If an account has been fraudulently set up in your name, you should bring this to the attention of your provider as soon as possible.

If you believe your details have been obtained as a result of a data protection breach, you should contact the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

Low income tariffs

If your complaint concerns BT Basic or Kingston Communications’ social access package, you should first explain your problem to your provider.

If this does not resolve the problem, contact Ofcom’s Consumer Contact Team on 0300 123 3333, 020 7981 3040 or if you want to complain in Welsh, 020 7981 3042.

Premium rate services

Premium rate numbers generally begin with 09, 118, 0871, 0872 and 0873.

Mobile text shortcode numbers – the five- and six-digit numbers that you can use to enter text competitions, give to charity via your mobile, download mobile games, etc. – are also considered premium rate.

If you’re concerned about a particular premium rate service, or the way it has been advertised, you can raise your complaint with the premium-rate regulator Phone-paid Services Authority (previously known as PhonePayPlus).

Payphones fault

You should contact the public payphone provider. To report a fault or damage to a BT Payphone please either call Freefone 0800 661 610, 8.30am-5.00pm, Monday to Friday, or report to BT online.

Payphones removal

When removing the last phone box from a particular location, BT and KCOM must consult with the district council or unitary authority or equivalent local body.

The local bodies will usually consult locally before making a decision and can veto the proposal. If your local phonebox is under threat of removal and you are opposed to the removal, write to your local council.

More details are set out in this Ofcom guidance.

Data protection

The Data Protection Act (DPA) 1998 is in place to safeguard your personal data.

If you have any concerns or queries about the safety of your personal information, you can visit the website of the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for further advice.

The ICO is responsible for enforcing DPA regulations.

Debt collection

Debt Collectors are licensed by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

If you believe a collection agency isn’t playing by the rules, tell them.

And if they continue to cause you concern, you can seek advice from Citizens Advice.


The internet is an open medium; unlike broadcasting, no one needs a licence to publish content on the web. However, that content must still obey certain laws.

The IWF reporting hotline offers an anonymous and safe place to report online sexual abuse imagery and videos, wherever they are found in the world.

The IWF's remit covers these three types of online content:

  • Child sexual abuse content hosted anywhere in the world
  • Criminally obscene adult content hosted in the UK
  • Non-photographic child sexual abuse images hosted in the UK

Recording calls

There are several pieces of legislation governing the recording of phone calls. These include:

  • Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA)
  • Telecommunications (Lawful Business Practice)(Interception of Communications) Regulations 2000 (LBP Regulations)
  • Data Protection Act 1998
  • Telecommunications (Data Protection and Privacy) Regulations 1999
  • Human Rights Act 1998

If you need help in this area you should seek legal advice. Due to the complexities of the laws involved, Ofcom is not in a position to offer guidance.

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