How to legally record phone calls
Can you record phone calls?
Let’s face it, we’re all struggling a little at this time of economic difficulty; it’s hit us hard and it’s hit us where it hurts – the wallet. And that’s ok. It’s good to be honest.
But with this continuing to result in patterns of unpaid debts and payment disagreements, it’s hardly surprising that businesses small and large are actively taking steps to protect their assets, with call recording being one of these methods. Call recording allows a business to capture and record business phone calls, with the ability to re-call a particular conversation at any time if the need arises.
We are often asked if recording calls is a legal and moral business tool, and we can confirm that, yes, it is – But businesses must also comply with UK laws when attempting to record business phone calls, especially if it is to be used as evidence in the event of a dispute. We’ll cover these compliance points below to help keep your business protected when recording calls.
Keeping your call recording legal & safe
Businesses must make all reasonable efforts to inform both parties that the phone call is, being recorded. There are different ways of interpreting what defines ‘reasonable efforts’, so we’ve highlighted three points that we believe are most important. A business must have one or more of the following:
- A pre-recorded telephone message informing callers that the conversation may be recorded
- Information on the company website under terms and conditions
- Information on recording policies within company email signatures and send outs
Usage & purposes
Businesses retain the right to record calls for ‘business purposes only’, such as training and security, and must do so under compliance with The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) which permits a company to lawfully record conversations only to:
- Establish facts
- Ensure regulatory compliance
- Demonstrate standards that are achieved or need to be achieved by training
It should also be noted that businesses dealing with personal or sensitive information, such as hospitals, schools, recruitment etc., must be registered with the data protection commissioner.
A few extra pointers…
- Never pass on a recorded call to a third party without BOTH parties’ consent
- Never record Business phone calls without making reasonable effort to inform both parties
- Never post conversations publicly such as on social media or websites
- Make sure recorded calls are stored in a safe and secure (password protected) location
Follow these precautions and you’ll keep your business out of trouble whist protecting your company’s interests.
See: More information on Call Recording