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Recording phone calls

What is the legal position?

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I know this is an accounting site not a law site, but call recording is becoming more and more important as a professional tool.  I understand the concept of giving a warning when a call is to be recorded, but if you are speaking to a business that states calls are recorded, does that mean the caller doesn't need to provide a counter warning of call recording?

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By New To Accountancy
17th Dec 2020 21:58

My assumption is that it is illegal without prior warning AND consent. To me, just because they have given you prior warning that the call is being recorded, isn't the same as allowing you to record calls without their consent but, this is only my assumption.
Huawei no longer allow call recording as it is against the law in certain jurisdictions (this is what they advised me in an email), which is a pain for me as I used it as a professional tool too.

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Replying to New To Accountancy:
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By Mr_awol
18th Dec 2020 09:28

New To Accountancy wrote:

Huawei no longer allow call recording as it is against the law in certain jurisdictions (this is what they advised me in an email), which is a pain for me as I used it as a professional tool too.

They still record it - but only the Ministry of State Security, the United Front Work Department, and President Xi himself, can now access the data.

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Replying to Mr_awol:
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By New To Accountancy
18th Dec 2020 09:37

Exactly. All they need to do now is make sure we're all chipped and they will know what we had for breakfast too.

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By Mr_awol
21st Dec 2020 14:45

Maybe Hwuieweiui were behind Covid, to create the vaccine, to microchip everyone - and they are just blaming it on Bill Gates as a cover story............

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By New To Accountancy
21st Dec 2020 15:14

I think you've sussed it. But I hope it's Samsung that's behind covid, as they'll have put a recording element in my chip hopefully, whereas Hwuieweiui won't as its against the law. Fingers crossed.

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By Mr_awol
21st Dec 2020 16:18

I'm hoping my Covid-jab-chip is compatible with Apple Pay.

Whilst Google Pay does, apparently, make Amex universally acceptable it also, i hear, makes every single entry show up as 'google' on your statement. not only will that confuse me when im doing my monthly household accounts, im worried it might also leave me without purchase protection and also unable to claim rewards for shop small, double membership points with certain retailers, etc.

Apple, like with most things, do pay-by-phone just that bit better then their Android/G-store cousins

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By New To Accountancy
21st Dec 2020 22:37

Well, I hope we all get what we want for chip-mas.

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By Akkountant
17th Dec 2020 21:59

I wonder how many in this forum do in fact record calls already.

There are very affordable VOIP software systems available now which record calls automatically (without notifying the other party) and after the end of the call the account holder receives an email with the recording attached. I imagine it would take some disk space.

Some years ago there was a small scandal when the Metropolitan Police Chief Sir Ian Blair secretly recorded a conversation between himself and the Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4800172.stm
(13/03/2006)

For those who dislike the idea of recording calls (well, none of us do really) consider this - you renew your car insurance by phone. You tell the insurance company that you do use the car for occasional business travel. The insurance person says that will be all right. The documents arrive in the post for you to sign and it says clearly "no business use". How many people sign up thinking "well I did tell them so it must be OK"?

It seems every large organisation we speak with is recording our call, so are we the only mugs who are not doing it? If we wanted to rely on their recording, would it surprise us if the organisation found a reason not to produce it?

We know HMRC records calls. When speaking with HMRC call centres I would want to tell them the call is being recorded if there's a chance the case might go on to a formal complaint or a tribunal case.

If I doubt the accuracy of what the HMRC person is telling me I would not want the individual to get into difficulty because they had been inadequately trained, but to refer it to their superviser, and for this reason again I would want to tell them that I am recording the call too.

Without telling the other party that the call was recorded, would our evidence be admissible in a hearing? Perhaps a legal person could clarify this. However, if someone denied something they said in a phone call, I expect a good advocate could find a way of showing that denial not credible without needing to play the actual recording. For this reason alone perhaps we should be recording our calls.

Anyway, since the Met Chief didn't warn that he was recording his calls, it must be perfectly legal.

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By Duggimon
18th Dec 2020 08:31

If the other party are recording the call you are entitled to a copy of the recording which you can request. If you want to make your own recording though you need to warn them.

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By [email protected]
19th Dec 2020 12:44

Duggimon wrote:

If the other party are recording the call you are entitled to a copy of the recording which you can request. If you want to make your own recording though you need to warn them.


I wonder how many of those unfavourable calls get lost in the system? Presumably if I go down that route and have my own copy of the call it must be a slam dunk. I'm giving them the evidence they say they are taking but then conveniently lose...
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Hallerud at Easter
By DJKL
18th Dec 2020 10:31

It will all end with funds paid to some dodgy ex security service types being traced as coming from you when they are apprehended attempting to bug the offices of your main rival.

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By Truthsayer
19th Dec 2020 09:58

I record all my phone conversations, but I only keep them if something significant was said. Sometimes I play them back to make accurate notes of the conversation or make sure I understood everything properly. It's perfectly legal without telling the other party, but there might be a question over the recording's admissibility in court. I don't know whether using a recording just to make accurate written notes and then deleting the recording would have the same problem with admissibility as the recording itself.

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By [email protected]
19th Dec 2020 12:42

I believe there may be a data protection issue for organisations recording, which is why so many of them have the recorded message. I know that I am entitled to record the call but can't share it with anyone. If I personally might want to use the call as evidence I don't want to find it's excluded because I didn't give the warning.

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By AnnAccountant
21st Dec 2020 13:46

Seems subcontractors are now recording meetings then dobbing their boss in to the ACCA

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Psycho
By Wilson Philips
21st Dec 2020 15:32

For me, it is simply a question of best professional practice. As noted above, merely recording a conversation without consent is not illegal. It is the subsequent use that determines whether or not consent ought to have been obtained. But I consider it no more than a matter of courtesy to ask a client whether or not they mind the call being recorded. I can count on one of my fingers the number of times that a client has declined the 'offer'.

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By [email protected]
22nd Dec 2020 14:08

Totally agree with that. However, I have been speaking to a business that is being less than ethical, and I suspect they might be less forthcoming if I say I am recording the conversation, even though their answer message states the call is being is recorded.

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