Yeah i too had a rather nasty experience with Swindles. I took out, online, a fully comprehensive policy for my brief paid in it full but made the classic schoolboy error of not unticking the box that said it would renew itself unless i cancelled it. I feel this, relatively new tactic, is at the very least sharp practices. Of course next year i no longer had the car and had also changed bank accounts. I then started getting letters from Swindles saying i now owed them two months worth of insurance payments which they, obviously, had been unable to collect. I explained the situation to the nice lady who said no bother sir we can cancel this for you immediatley. Then the shysters hit me with a bill for over £350!!! Which was for them having issued documents, what a hassle eh?! and a huge cancellation fee stuck on the top. Dont get me wrong i would have, more than likely, paid a reasonable penalty. However this bill comically enough was much more than a years insurance!! I refused to pay it. Stating that the option to tick was not on the website when i used it. Phonecalls followed. I simply stuck to my guns. Never lost my temper, always polite:-) They sent letters, which i just sent back unopened marked not at this address. Insurance was at my mums. In the end they got bored. This was over two years ago, so i think i'm home n dry now. Motto don't give in to these shylocks and their exuberant preposterous hughely highly ficticious and completely inflated demands......
I personally believe that the OFT guidelines introduced in relation to tracing have made more problems for the potential debtor and they, as a result of these guidelines, are now more likely to suffer embarassment. I worked for Wescot, in the trace department, for a number of years. Intially when we contacted neighbours we tried to give the impression that we were a friend that had simply lost touch with their neighbour. Though we were always careful to never say this directly. So at best the neighbour thought we were just an old friend and at worst they thought we were attempting some sort of [problem]. Very rarely did they put the pieces together and cry "debt mob." However OFT guidlines soon changed all this as we were instucted to be completely transparent in our business. So if asked where we were calling from we had to say Wescot, whereas in the past we would simply have said Glasgow. We started using the trading name 2F so neighbours would not immediatley realise it was concerning debt. When asked what 2F did we would attempt to be vague, saying we did various things. For example business solutions. However the OFT said we could not say this as 2F was not a company and we had to say it was a trading name of the company Wescot. Practically everybody knows of Wescot so neighbours would immediatley assume debt was involved. We then had to say although Wescot was primarily a debt recovery agency it did not follow that we were looking for their neighbour with regards to them owning monies. However in most cases the damage was already done. I feel its worth pointing out here, and this is a comment on your fellow man, that i definitely obtained more information from neighbours once they realised that debt was involved and not friendship. Its amazing how many people wanted to stick their neighbours right in it. Perhaps out of spite or jealousy. Definitely not through fear though. Obviously tracing is a legal activity as the customer has signed the Consumer credit Act of 1974. Though it is highly improper to try and obtained information through deception or false representation. This practice was commonplace in the industry until call recording was brought in as standard.