COLD callers can be the bane of your life if you work from home or spend much time there.

At their worst, they’re often insistent and bullying and at the least, intrusive and a nuisance.

Now, tough new measures could cull at least one area of cold-calling. Phone customers are given the choice to opt in to be contacted by businesses offering to settle compensation for personal injury or mis-sold payment protection insurance (PPI). That welcome move doesn’t address it all but it helps.

I always try not to be rude with cold-callers but sometimes it’s difficult not being polite. The other day, though, I had a call purporting to be from Virgin Media about our broadband, phones etc and had to explain that my husband deals with those bills.

“He deals with all the Virgin areas,” I blithely told her. Silence was the response. Perhaps I’ve found an answer."