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StepChange responds to proposed Government ban on financial cold callers

2 August 2023

Today the Government has launched a consultation and call for evidence on proposals to ban cold calling for consumer financial services and products.

In response, Richard Lane, Director of External Affairs at StepChange, said:

“The Government’s move to ban cold calling for consumer financial services and products is very welcome progress in the fight against scammers who pose a significant threat to financially vulnerable consumers. We have seen too many cases where clients’ financial positions have been made worse by services taken out as a result of unscrupulous and unsolicited calls.

“The consultation specifically places debt services and IVAs in scope, but a ban on cold calling will not be enough to stop the harm caused by fraudulent online ads from unregulated IVA lead generators and ‘warm callers’ that follow up. These callers have someone’s details, but their intentions may be no less unscrupulous. We’ve seen many consumers in need of debt advice at a vulnerable time preyed upon by firms posing as debt advice charities, who often route them towards an IVA from a provider paying high referral fees. The Government must use this opportunity to finally end this long standing harm.”

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