The Chocolate Teapot Service

This morning my cell phone rings (a rare event, it’s usually texts) and I answer …
“This is mumble calling from mumble, mumble, mumble, about your recent car accident”

Now, I have not even had so much as a car-park scrape in about twenty years, and I know this is a scam, so I reply:
“I’m sorry, I don’t talk to scammers” and hang up. I have the number that they called from.

My phone is listed with the TPS so I go to report it.
The TPS does not handle scam calls.
The TPS will only handle complaints if I give them the name of the company who called me (I don’t think they will accept mumble mumble as valid, somehow).
The Information Commissioner’s Office will not handle calls that are scams or fraudulent (and this one surely was) but refer one to the police.
The police have a nice form I can fill in - “This should only take you 20 minutes” - and I have other things that matter more to me.

So an attempted fraud/scam/crime goes unreported.
As far as officialdom is concerned, it was not reported, so it did not happen.
This proves that the TPS works.

Funny thing is that very few people have my cell-phone number - family, the hospital that cannot treat my SPMS, people like that - so why did they try my number?

All I can do is list it on a site like “WhoCallsMe” which will give others the opportunity of blocking it.

I am also thinking of the UTPS -U as in Useless.


Hi Geoff,

I’ve started getting cold-callers to my mobile, which I probably use about twice a year, on average - and you could probably count the people who know the number on the fingers of one hand (close friends and family only - never give it out to trade).

So I suspect they are not “getting” your number from anywhere, but have software which understands the syntax of a valid UK mobile number, and just auto-dials. It will get a few duds, but I expect proceeds straight to the next potentially valid number.

I also think there’s a good chance they’re outside the UK, and that the caller’s number is “spoofed” to look like it’s domestic.

I don’t even take the call if it’s not in my address book (which means the name flashes up). But a few weeks ago, I got someone calling me several days running, on the dot of 10:30 every morning, from a different mobile number each time. The last part is why I’m convinced the numbers were “spoofed”. The monotonous regularity of it meant I was sure it was the same person or organisation - but always from a different number? And none of them on: “Whocallsme”? Which is why I think the numbers were all fake.


Hi I too get these on my mobile. PPI calls and also “you have been involved in a car accident”, I said I don’t have a car. They said what about as a passenger. I said I rarely go in a car, no accident. I hang up. I too am TPS, it isn’t working the calls still keep coming and sometimes 8pm on a Sunday evening, cheeky.


i understand your frustration. The calls whilst incredibly irratating are generally call centres ringing trying to find customers who may have genuine claims for real accidents.

They then send your details to solicitors in return for a fee.

they work on the assumption that out of 'x" number of calls they will get ‘x’ claims and it’s cheaper to use overseas call centres.

they use cold calling telephone systems as Tina has said.

it is an extension to TV advertising that works on a similar theme but encourages the viewer to call.

i fear we are stuck with it and can do very little other than don’t answer the phone.



I get these call too. Just last week I had one who, when I asked him for the details of the accident hung up on me. Next time I think I’ll ask him which accident he’s referring to. Then I feel guilty because the callers are only trying to earn a living and really don’t need my sarcasm.

Jan x

So there’s no actual chocolate involved here ? And I’m hungry ! :wink: If i don’t know the number, I ignore the calls and block the number. EE love me !

l find the TPS pretty useless too. lt does not work on ‘overseas’ calls. And most of the annoying cold calls are from Mumbai.

l just put the phone down - these call operators are working for tuppence - and it seems callous to give them any abuse. But l do have a good curse afterwards!

The hospital and dentist has my mobile number so that they can send a text to remind me of an appointment. So l am not sure why l get the occasional nuisance cold call on my mobile. Except my phone is with Tesco! And l know they share all your details. A friend who is a manager with Tescos said she would never have a store card. As Tesco - and all the other supermarkets - actually sell all the info to other businesses.

MPS is another chocolate tea-pot. lf you just mention to your friendly postman - they will stop putting junkmail in your postbox.

I don’t answer my mobile if it rings and I don’t know the number. The calls that are computer generated log it when someone picks up and they know they’ve got a real number. Opening you up to being bugged by all and sundry after that (-_-)

I need to get onto Alcura to call my landline, not my mobile, because there’s always a risk that I’m not recognise the Northampton area code and just ignore them.

Next time answer it by saying

‘Ok, I’ve finally got it all cut up but there is blood everywhere and I don’t it will all fit in the suitcase!’ - then hang up

JBK (reading too many serial killer books)

Hmm, why would they be calling people though? I thought their numbers were 0845 or 0345.

Lots of phone calling robots over here in Canada. But they are always very grateful for my using Air Canada / West Jet / Marriott Hotels…

I simply add the number to my list of blocked and carry on with my life.

These auto-diallers are a nuisance to a minimal degree and just a fact of life these days. I think the lackadaisia of services supposedly designed to thwart such things is evidence of the futility in this effort.

They are mere techno-mossies; swat them away and try not to be bitten.

Paolo are you able to block numbers on mobiles over there, or are you talking about your landline?

I don’t have any option to block numbers on my phone, but I’ll admit that may be because my phone’s 10 years old…don’t know if it’s a function on newer models.

it’s my moby. i don’t bother with a landline. haven’t done in over 20 years… i mean… why would you?

Why indeed, unfortunately I have to have a landline as my care call is hooked up to it, don’t ask how or why cos I have no idea. Also it’s some kind of deal with my broadband and “free” TiVo box, I’m sure to be getting conned and would appreciate someone telling me about a good (cheaper) alternative.

My mobile has a spam number facility but I’m sure they just use a different number to get in touch the next time.

Jan x

Sorry that should not be spam number facility, it’s a reject list you add the number to.

Jan x

Depending on the mood I am in, I deal with these calls in one of 4 ways.

  1. I dont recognise the number, so don`t answer.

  2. I answer the call in an annoyed way and humph about it for 10 minutes.

  3. this is the most fun. I say What? Who are you? I cant hear what youre saying. I dont know what you mean…`…or…and I love this one…

  4. No, Im not Mrs so and so. No, theyve all gone out Im on my own. Im poorly. Are you poorly too?

They hang up first and I giggle!


I just don’t answer calls from numbers that my mobile does not recognize; if it’s a real person, they will leave a message. The land-line is more of a problem because it has fewer numbers stored on it; the BT nuisance-call filter works pretty well but it doesn’t screen out all the rubbish, so I rarely answer land-line calls that I don’t recognize either. Again, genuine callers can always leave a message. As a way of managing my blood-pressure, it works for me.


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I don’t answer my land line, I let the machine pick it up, therefore it’s full of 'Hello, it’s me" or hang ups…

I’ve got a highly efficient way of dealing with nuisance calls…I died four years ago this november.Every time they asked for me I’d say I was my brother.I’d died and please take,him off the lists.I must have done it 30-40 times and it works.I’ve never had a cold call on my mobile so I’ve got that to look forwards to.

Wb’s brother

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The last time I had someone trying to sell me insurance the guy was actually useful! Lol, shock abounds! Apparently, I can’t legally be sold life insurance until I’m 50 (I’m 43), because of the MS? So this guy said, anyway, I am not eligible! He said a lot of companies had been taken to court, for selling insurance to people with MS by omitting this vital fact from their policy, so when they made a claim, the policy was invalid.

He gives me his name and number to call him back in 7 years, which I found utterly hysterical. Part of me really wanted to ask him if he seriously hoped to still be a cold-calling insurance salesman in 7 years time, but only a very small part which was easily over-ruled by the part of me that was keen to put the phone down.