The term cold calling is used in Marketing to separate the calls made to consumers.
You have the “warm” calls, those made to consumers who are “more less” expecting your call, because they are your member or they have asked you for information. People who know that you have their contact details and are ok with receiving a call from you.
Then you have the “cold” call, which means that a consumer or customer is contacted without actually expecting this call, and probably is “thrown” into a conversation they didn’t expect.
We could say that there are different kinds of cold calls as well. Because if the “hard-core” cold calls are those made by a telemarketer who has been given a telephone listing and is cherry picking customers, there are also cold calls that are made to consumers who have been “pre-selected” although they are not aware of this. So in reality the call might be “cold” for the consumer but the telemarketer is very “warm” on the person he is targeting!
What happens with the Timeshare consumers nowadays is that often they are contacted by (dubious) companies who seem to know everything about them although the consumer never provided them with their details and never asked to be called!
Should this be excepted as “that can happen to anybody”? Do we accept that Cold calling is a common use for businesses? Well not really, because in reality a lot of dubious companies are targeting those people who they know have been defrauded in the past and as a matter of fact the supposed services they offer are related to those events.
Danger is that consumers when they hear the telemarketer on the phone with all their details, sometimes even the bank account number they used and other very personal details, a certain kind of “trust” is created and the consumer might think that it is ok as this company obviously are the “appointed” lawyers or notaries, etc.
This brings us to the issue as well of solicitors if they are allowed to cold call. As per the code of Conduct (http://www.sra.org.uk/home/home.page ) they should not cold call and neither accepts any customers obtained through the cold call. Solicitors accepting claims obtained by cold calling break Solicitors Regulation Authority publicity rules.
Other cold calls who are actually very “warm” for the telemarketers as well, are those made by the so called Fly-buy companies to Timeshare owners. These companies are offering all kinds of promotional holidays. Many of these companies seem to have obtained the customers membership details and use these as well to create a certain kind of “common factor” by saying they are connected to their resort or exchange company. Again a sense of trust is created based actually on a lie.
Bottom-line here is that unfortunately experience has taught us that in 99.99% of the cases a cold caller turns out to be fraudulent. And those who are not “fraudulent”, have certainly obtained the consumers details through a dubious source.
So always be on guard and for as much as the “cold” caller seems to know about you, your membership or what happened to you in the past, don’t ever take their word for granted and do your research. Keep in mind that there is nothing wrong with asking them directly how they obtained your personal details.
You better be safe than sorry!