We have a five digit phone number.
When it was allocated to us we thought it was a bit unusual, but having seen that a few places round here have five digit numbers, thought no more about it. In general, it causes no problems, apart from when over-zealous software engineers have put validation on phone number fields, and tell us ours is too short to be valid. We are now used to this, and put an extra digit on the end when this happens. Now guess, go on, guess which is the latest company to tell us our phone number is invalid? BT. That’s right. The British Telecom website, the site of the company which gave us this number, tells us it is invalid. You have to laugh.
Something which doesn’t make me laugh is marketing calls. We get so many. Companies are desperate to sell me life insurance, get me to consolidate all my debts, claim compensation for mis-sold PPI or tell me about the wonderful prize I’ve just won.
We registered with the telephone preference service months ago, so these calls should have stopped. I was getting annoyed at the fact it made no difference at all. I wondered what the point was, if all these companies were ignoring the law and cold calling us even when our number was registered. It was driving me mad, being disturbed by these calls every day.
Then it struck me.
They aren’t calling our number.
They are calling a six-digit number, the first five digits of which happen to be our number. This means we get ten times as many random calls as the average household.
I want a new phone number!