February 2nd, 2009

Barclaycard argh

On 1st January 2009, I was awoken (well, I wasn't really asleep), by a phone call at about 0930. This rather annoyed me - who calls people that early on Monday morning?

It was an automated call from Barclaycard asking to speak to a "Manif Yasim". I am not a Barclaycard customer and I never have been.

It asked for their customer number, if that was me, and options for me, if I was someone else, to tell them that "Manif Yasim" would call back later. There was no option to speak to a live operator, and attempts to type nonsense in or strange noises at the prompt did not get me to a live operator.

I've not seen any post for that person here. This repeated an hour later, and then an hour later. The third time I was actually coherent enough to grab a pen to write down the contact number it provided for Manif Yasim to call back (0844 811 0324). Three times I phoned this, each time asking for the phone number to be removed from their database and there not to be any calls made to me again. Three times I was told this was done. Eventually, they stopped. But maybe that was just because

On Saturday, I got another phone call, from Barclaycard, asking to speak to Manif Yasim. This time I am writing the times down. I get called again at 10.09, and I call the contact number again and explain my predicament. This time I am put through to an external number, 0151 473 2528, where I talk to someone. She says she has removed the number from the system. I go to Ikea for about an hour and a half, and when I return, I get calls again at 12.02 and 12.56. I phone the Liverpool number again, and this time I am told they can't find my number on their system at all. I am further told that the system in any case should not be calling me hourly - maybe twice a day, but not that often. Maybe, they say, the day's jobs have already been generated and I am just getting backlog calls. They will stop after the overnight run has happened.

Today, I got a call from the same people at 08.36. And then I went to work. When I got back from work, I got one at 19.21. I call again, and am told my number is not in their system, and that maybe it was just because it was removed at a weekend.

I think this sort of system ought to be illegal, frankly. Any database-generated call ought to have some way of breaking out to a human. But that's not the point. How on Earth can I speak to someone who is actually capable of stopping this? I'm at my wits end.