So has anyone else been getting weird creepy calls from an anonymous telephone number lately? I’ve now had it to both my home phone and mobile. Grrr!

An automated voice starts off with something along the lines of:
“This is a free national awareness message…”, then goes on to say something about debts.

I registered both numbers with the TPS ages ago, so there must be something dodgy going on..?

Comments on: "“This is a free national awareness message…”" (54)

  1. … 14 July 2008 1:26
    I dialled 1471 to pick up last call. Last caller was 0845 8676641.
    Wanted to know who is that caller and dialled. Female voice:”Your accounts have been disabled.” Of course I was curious. But since none of my financial contacts have that number, I just left the whole thing alone for others to worry about.

  2. Martin B said:

    I just received one and, after googling the number came across this page. I am ex directory and on TPS but still got it. I immediately called Virgin Media’s nuisance call bureau, but they cannot block an individual number, although they have passed the complaint on to the provider of that number. All I can suggest is that anyone reading this does the same thing. Give them as much grief as they give you.

  3. greenpark said:

    They are still at it: number withheld

  4. Annoyed at Spam said:

    Telling them to #*!^ off doesn’t work, I’ve tried. I’ve also asked them about 20 times now to stop phoning me and they still are. I’m going to get my number changed cause it’s really hacking me off.

  5. I get this too, frequently, and also one with a woman who says “Are you aware…” (and something about debt). I hope they all die screaming in a fiery collision.

  6. No,Iamnotaware said:

    I am also with VirginMedia and registered with the TPS (perhaps I should have used TCP. I have had the same crappy telephone calls for about two years.

  7. i get them at least once a day!!!!!!!!!! and i cant do anything about it? who do i complain to? ive got no idea. honistly, once a day the same message gets sent to me and its really…..really……really starting to piss me off.

  8. message hater said:

    I get these all the time – at home & at work!

    I now put the phone down but don’t hang up – if they want to annoy me they can at least pay for the privilege. If anyone has any ideas on how to block the *#$%ers I’d love to hear them.

  9. Just had one, I’m in London.
    The problem I had was it was withheld and didn’t show a number, this means i’ll always answer it thinking it’s someone I know.
    I wouldn’t advise letting the phone call go on, it’s possible that it’s been reversed so you pay the bill!!!

  10. Now I’m getting automated calls that start something like “Hello. Why not take advantage of a government backed scheme…”


  11. I’m also getting the “Hello. Why not take advantage of a government backed scheme” call. I’m also with Virgin Media. Is everyone receiving these calls? I get them once or twice a day but have no caller display so always pick up. 1471 says number is withheld. I’m also registered with TPS.

  12. “Hello. Why not take advantage of a government backed scheme” I get this 4 or 5 times a day…

    I also get the woman’s voice satying “Are you aware…” 2 or 3 times a week… I’m on BT, ex directory, registered with TPS…

    We even get phone calls chasing previous tenants regarding their debts, and they never even had a phone here, nevermind my number!!!

    You can block witheld numbers with BT, but you have to pay for the privilege? In todays economic climate, I can’t justify adding an extra £20 per quarter to my phone bill :(

  13. Im with BT, TPS and ex-directory Ive just been called for the third time (possibly more) in the space of a week by this lot. Theres people in my house who work shifts. BT charge for blocking calls from witheld numbers but I dont see why I should have to pay for something which costs them nothing to provide Im seriously considering having the landline taken out (its only really there so I can have broadband) over the number of nuisance telemarketing calls, companies looking for the previous owners of my number (Ive only been living here like three years) and oddball cranks that keep calling here.

  14. for feck sake said:

    This is a free message do not hang up….. something about government debt shite. what is this all about and why are they calling. can they not just leave ppl alone to live their lives in the way they want. IN PEACE!!!!!!

  15. RevengeOfThePencil said:

    We’ve been getting these calls for months now, with BT but subscribe to Virgin Media Broadband and ex-directory.

    Each night at roughly 7:30pm we get exactly the same call ‘This is a free message…’ e.t.c. dialling 1471 shows it’s an anonymous number. The only way out it seems is to listen for the number they give and email this number to the authorities.

  16. Yes, I am getting this too. I’m registered with the TPS and no results. I’ve had them call as much as 3 times in a day. And they call at least twice a week.

    If you listen to the whole message they want you to press the touch tone for more information – but I reckon there must be something dodgy about it like a charge or something if you do follow their instructions.

    If you want until the end of the message – no information whatsoever about the company. If it were an honest company there would be some way of contacting them directly.

    Steer well clear. If I find a solution I will post it up here – but none as yet…

  17. I have got some more calls and have complained to the telephone preference service. The more complaints they receive the more likely they are to do something about it, so please visit them and make a complaint.

  18. Drivencrazy said:

    I’ve had these cowboys call at least twice a day for the last two months and its driving me crazy. they can call anywhere from 7AM to 10PM and when i do press 2 to talk to one of their lovely operators I almost always get the same really rude guy who just swears a me when i ask to be removed and slams the phone down.

    when (and if) these cowboys are working on the behalf of a legitimate company the company often doesnt know (or claims not to) the methods used to gain customers by the people they hire and can usually get you removed from the mailing list.

    if you play along and get the real company name off these idiots it migh be possible to trace the company in question.

  19. Getting really annoyed said:

    I’ve been getting the same automated message “Hello, please do not hang up the phone…Debt Relief Order…Press 2..” rubbish for the past week!!! 3 times a day usually around midday and before 8pm!!!! It is driving me NUTS!!!!!!!!!!! Then when you find out last number received it’s witheld!!!!! If you press 2 at the end…they probably charge £1.50 per minute to your phone bill….

    • I’m getting the same message – have done for some time – I refuse to ‘press 2’ as I know it will cost me. I wish they would give more info about who they are, but I feel it may be a scam. I’m wondering if my number is being targeted as we were allocated it when we move here in 2008, and have received calls for the previous owner of the number regarding debt ever since. It is registered with the TPS so it must be on a list of numbers of known debtors, I suppose. The problem is – who to report it to!

      • Further to my previous message, I called the Information Commissioners Office – they deal with recorded phone calls (whereas TPS deals with those from real people). Their hands are tied – they have no idea where these originate, but say they may be from overseas. If they had any information about the callers they could take action. The first port of call is to your telephone provider – the person I spoke to says that he knows some people have had success with this although they had to work hard to achieve it. Also write to your MP and state that this is a very real problem that needs to be raised in the Commons, so that proper investigations can be done and laws made to prevent it happening again. He also said that it would not be a good idea to press “2” as there may be someone on the other end of the line who couldget info out of us without us even knowing they were doing so!

  20. I am setting up a Facebook group to collate all the information that is out there about this problem and take action.

    As they hide thier number its much harder for people to complain to the TPS, but this problem is not going to go away without taking action. Please join me.

    Or search Facebook for the group “No More Freee Messages”

    Many thanks,


  21. ive been getting them about 4 times a day and its really getting on my nerves. i keep asking them to take my number off the lists which they are agreeing to do but then more calls are coming. i spoke to someone today, said they were “financial solutions” and they told me there’s a load of different companies ringing so when you ask to get removed from one, the others will still ring ARGH!!!

  22. kgldsun said:

    Oh my god, this constant calling is driving me nuts. Every day sometimes 2 and 3 times a day! Its the same elderly guy, well spoken, ‘Hi Please do not hang up’
    Surely something can be done to put a stop to it.
    I have had our telephone number over 25 years, have no cash problems and would not of entertained anything like it on websites or such. Heres hoping………

  23. snow-white said:

    If anyone finds out who these pests are; please post their full details on this site so we can all makea formal complaint or waste their phone bill or better still take an action for harrassment and nuisance calls. BT wont help!

  24. Andrew Clarke said:

    All calls that are terminated in the UK are logged, and the identity of the caller is known to BT. A caller cannot hide their identity to the telephone company, but only block it to the end user. The Information Commissioners Office know this, and can compel BT to give the information.. BT will be getting a great deal of revenue from these SPAM callers so they will be very disinclined to do anything about it, but don’t let anyone pretend to you that it is difficult or impossible to find out, or that BT cannot block the calls. They can.
    If the ICO pretends that there is nothing they can do, then get on to your MP and make sure he understands the issues.

  25. snow-white said:

    Dont know if anyone might be interested; I have just found out about a gadget called ‘True-Call” – bit pricey at £99 but it handles all your calls; screens calls – lets through people you have programmed to accept and rejects anything you put on the withheld/automated and even international calls. YOU are in complete control with this box; I have just ordered one and will be programming it up as soon as it gets here. Don’t see why we should have to buy anything to stop the nuisance – but at the end of the day its worth something for the peace and quiet and one in the eye for the pests.

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