* Posts by Joe Harrison

437 posts • joined 1 Jun 2007

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ICO probes NHS clinic's data blunder that exposed HIV+ status of 800 patients

Joe Harrison
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Happens to the best of us

A few years ago a prominent UK digital rights organisation (I can't bring myself to embarrass them again) sent out a mail about their internet privacy campaign to the entire dlist instead of bcc...

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Small wonder, little competition: Asus Chromebook Flip

Joe Harrison
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keep it

Whenever I am on a train listening to music on my phone, and it goes into a tunnel, and the music doesn't cut off because it's on sd card and not in a cloud, well that's when I pat myself on the back for being old and boring instead of hipster 2.0

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Bloke clicks GitHub 'commit' button in Visual Studio, gets slapped with $6,500 AWS bill

Joe Harrison
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What is wrong with Amazon?

I wanted to sign up for their free trial on day one but have never done so precisely because

(a) I don't know what I'm doing until I have learnt

(b) don't want my lack of knowledge somehow to trigger a massive credit card bill.

You would think they would understand this.

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Jailbreaking pirates popped in world's largest iCloud raid – 225,000 accounts hit

Joe Harrison
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Rooted mine

I have barely any reason to root my Android phone but did it anyway just on general principle. Why not, I paid for it. Cannot understand the "jailbreaking is bad and you mustn't do it" sentiment in this thread.

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Turn-by-turn directions coming to Ordnance Survey Maps

Joe Harrison
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Phone recharge not a problem with this bad boy

http://www.dx.com/p/13w-dual-output-foldable-portable-50000mah-solar-panel-charger-acu-camouflage-404135

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Joe Harrison
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Re: A question.

Unfortunately OS ruled over the maps business for too long, then woke up too late. I personally have all the mapping I need for free thanks, so no need for OS to try and charge me for anything (which I already paid for anyway.)

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T-Mobile US CEO calls his subscribers thieves, gripes about 'unlimited' limited tethering

Joe Harrison
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Daft

Phones are fast turning into general purpose computers, PCs are fast becoming more nonexistent. How long before "tethering" is meaningless?

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Honor 7 – heir apparent to the mid-range Android crown

Joe Harrison
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I have an Honor 6

Not really that different just less resolution camera and less fingerprint toys etc. The battery is not all that and a day of heavy use will have you looking nervously at the battery meter come evening. The thing I like least about it is the way that promised dates for software upgrades came and went with nothing released. Having said all that it is otherwise a pretty good solid phone and definitely worth a look if you think you can cope with it's oddball Apple-like GUI.

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Krebs: I know who hacked Ashley Madison

Joe Harrison
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Re: Hmmmm

Exactly, because everyone who likes a particular song has it playing 24x7. It's not only the song that's being played, Krebs is as well.

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French woman gets €800 a month for electromagnetic-field 'disability'

Joe Harrison
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Microwave oven

Put your head in one, you will soon find out whether RF affects humans or not. Mobile phone emissions on much the same frequencies not so much, if at all. Which is another way of saying the whole thing is about the effective radiated power.

I doubt very much that if you actually tested people you would find that all humans have identical sensitivity to power levels. To all you smirking "double blind tests never show anything" types in the thread, have your tests been done on that particular French human?

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Security for those who know they can't win the security war

Joe Harrison
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I'm tired already just reading it

"The bottom line? The measures you take should mirror the sensitivity of the files you want to protect."

This is fantastic advice, unfortunately the rest of the article sounds more like "go to enormous lengths to protect everything 100%".

I don't think I could realistically operate such an intense regime on my ordinary daily stuff. No good having a secure backup if you can't remember the 30-character password allowing you to mount your Truecrypt volume so you can enter your other 30-character password etc.

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FBI probed SciFi author Ray Bradbury for plot to glum-down America

Joe Harrison
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What does liberal mean

It wasn't until 1968 that the FBI gave up trying to tag Bradbury as more than a “known liberal writer”

What does "liberal" actually mean when used by Americans?

I read https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modern_liberalism_in_the_United_States but it doesn't really explain the way that a lot of them routinely use the word.

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'Unexpected item in baggage area' assigned to rubbish area

Joe Harrison
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Re: Waitrose (very posh - sorry)

Yes, and for some reason it all works fine without needing to weigh all your stuff.

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Joe Harrison
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Never mind bag it, just bin it

After a lot of thought I came to the conclusion that self-scans are so disruptive because they don't operate in the way that customers expect a checkout to work. Everyone has learnt from an early age that checkouts have a conveyor belt, a scanner, then a dumping ground where you can put your things into bags. The self-scans break that model with their unintuitive and ultimately pointless weight check.

One of the most annoying aspects is that self-scans work differently in different supermarket chains. In Morrisons Manchester recently I even watched the machine's video which shows a cartoon figure placing scanned goods on a platform at the right-hand-side of the scanner. The weighing sensor is in fact on the left of the scanner. I pointed this out to the employee who turned up to help but she still treated me as if I was too thick to put my own socks on.

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Oi, Google! Remove links to that removed story, yells forceful ICO

Joe Harrison
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Re: Please remove the link...

How is it even possible; Google would have to check for that person's name for the rest of the lifetime of the internet. What happens a year from now when someone posts "... yes and don't forget how they made them take down that link to Mr. Blobbo Boggins and his inflatable friend." Suddenly Google is back in the poo again.

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Hey, folks. Meet the economics 'genius' behind Jeremy Corbyn

Joe Harrison
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Not impressed

I'm no economist and I'm not going to start arguing the toss with Tim about all those formulas, although I must say it's hard to take a writer seriously when he uses terms such as "lefty". However in the context of the current worldwide insanity (central banks printing like crazy to buy up bonds and stocks) my naive view saw nothing in the article which really sounded all that bad, relatively speaking!

The average voter will not understand the formulae either but may be very tempted to vote for someone like Jeremy Corbyn as a change from all the smooth Westminster lookalikes infesting their TV screens every night.

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Dell, Google dangle Chromebooks over IT bosses sick of Windows

Joe Harrison
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Will nobody think of the users?

People are usually fairly alright with being given a corporate laptop despite having to look after it, charge it up, cart it around everywhere, and so on. This is because they can also use it for their own stuff (if necessary by ignoring policies that say they mustn't.)

The same might not be true for a dumb box that only boots into a locked-down remote desktop.

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SEC: Ukrainian hackers' investment fraud ring raked in millions in 'unprecedented' hack

Joe Harrison
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One to bind them all

Why is a group of people suddenly referred to as a "ring" as soon as they get up to something dastardly?

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Stop taking drug advice from Kim Kardashian on Twitter, sighs watchdog

Joe Harrison
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Epic fail! Nobody is going to give them 3.4M for that, because jealousy.

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Hey, Apple! 1999 just called and it wants its voicemail avatar back

Joe Harrison
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Wildfire was a saucy one

She used to invite me to listen to her collection of William Shatner LPs

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Let's all binge on Blake’s 7 and help save the BBC ... from itself

Joe Harrison
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License ≠ BBC

Just a reminder that the TV license is not something you pay in return for having BBCness. I am not bothered about BBC and in fact I have my dish pointed at a satellite which doesn't broadcast BBC. I still have to pay however.

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Bloke cuffed for blowing low-flying camera drone to bits with shotgun

Joe Harrison
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Re: Good for him

Things fly over my house without my permission all the time, doesn't mean I can shoot them down.

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We put Windows 10 on a small fondleslab: STILL not ready, 3 days to go

Joe Harrison
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KB305583

If you are not seeing the "update to Windows 10" icon you need to install KB305583. Sometimes a few registry hacks are needed as well.

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Google dumps ISP email support. Virgin Media takes ball, stomps home

Joe Harrison
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who cares

It's not the 1990s any more - do people really expect an email account from their ISP these days?

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Google robo-car in rear-end smash – but cack-handed human blamed

Joe Harrison
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Totally agree. Brake lights are (intentionally) very bright and I really don't need them shining in my face for a couple of minutes because the guy in front could not bother to engage the handbrake like the highway code says you should.

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Your security is just dandy, Apple Pay, but here comes Android

Joe Harrison
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who pays

So Apple get paid a small slice per transaction, which is to say using the phone costs more than using the card. Who ultimately foots the bill for that? You already know the answer.

Seems to me very similar to having your airport boarding card on your phone - quite cool the first couple of times but rapidly becomes annoying.

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Microsoft again offers free certification exams to failures

Joe Harrison
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I think they're good

Everyone thinks they know their stuff but when you need to pass an exam you are pretty much forced to learn the lesser-used bits as well. I did the NT4 exams back in the day and made a point of implementing everything I was learning on some test servers. For a short period in my life I did actually know what I was doing. Although having said that I couldn't agree more with AMBxx, the NT4 track had a lot of useful generic networking,not just learning product features A to Z.

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Someone at Subway is a serious security nerd

Joe Harrison
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To be fair

I've got a lot of sympathy with everyone who just wants to buy a sandwich and doesn't see the need for top security. To be fair though perhaps they are planning some sort of electronic payment in a later version? It didn't go down well when Starbucks gift cards got the hack.

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Sorry, say boffins, the LHC still hasn't sucked us into a black hole

Joe Harrison
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It's almost Friday

The barman says "Sorry sir we don't serve CERN's time-travelling particles in here."

A tachyon goes into a bar.

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Joe Harrison
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Re: Bravo

♫ The chances of anything coming from CERN were a million to one they said ♪

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As the US realises it's been PWNED, when will OPM heads roll?

Joe Harrison
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Re: Ha

Obama administration "views the federal government as capable of tackling almost every problem the nation faces"

Nation faces a problem, government tackles it, isn't that what they're supposed to do? Think I must be missing a subtlety here.

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Zionists stole my SHOE, claims Muslim campaigner

Joe Harrison
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Stasi

The East German secret police routinely used the tactic of "Zersetzung" which means breaking in and moving your stuff around in subtle but noticeable ways. The message was simple "we know where you live". The more the target protested the more they hoped everyone would write him off as a nutter. It does seem to have worked very effectively this time on El Reg readership.

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Large Hadron Collider gives young ALICE a black-hole ray gun

Joe Harrison
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Live coverage

"Bored Scientists Now Just Sticking Random Things Into Large Hadron Collider"

http://www.theonion.com/video/bored-scientists-now-just-sticking-random-things-i-36415

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Spoiling staff with toys could turn against your business

Joe Harrison
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bash the users

I have every respect for IT support, the fine work we do, and the difficult conditions under which sometimes we do it. Having said that I feel that here some control freakery is barely being concealed. The article has a lot of good stuff but the writing style makes the author sound like a bit of a net nazi.

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UK safety app keeping lorries on the right side of cyclists

Joe Harrison
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Not anti-cyclist but

For many years I was lucky enough to live two miles from my office with the ability to cycle from home to work completely via cycle tracks, no need to go on roads at all. Absolutely brilliant. I don't live there any more however so I was forced to decide "no more bike to work."

I realise we have just as much right as car drivers to be on the roads but from a practical point of view it is just too dange. You wouldn't walk along the yellow lines with a truck whizzing next to you, is a bike that much different?

For the avoidance of doubt - my point is not that "cyclists should be off the roads" it is that I personally enjoy living too much to share a road with the lorries.

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Pakistan URINE STORM: Google Maps chokes off user editing

Joe Harrison
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There are alternatives

For example https://maps.yandex.ru/

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London man arrested over $40 MILLION HFT flash crash allegations

Joe Harrison
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Re: Does not compute...

Perhaps retaliation because UK financial regulation had a go at them last week?

"British regulator challenges US over Berkshire scrutiny"

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/75ef1d94-e784-11e4-8ebb-00144feab7de.html

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Googley TENTACLES reach towards YOUR email

Joe Harrison
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You can do something similar even without your own domain. Add a + at the end of the local part.

For example, messages sent to jane.doe+notes@gmail.com are delivered to jane.doe@gmail.com

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Life after Nokia: Microsoft Lumia 640 budget WinPho blower

Joe Harrison
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Only 80 quid if you already have suitable SIM

Pay as you go upgrade http://www.hotukdeals.com/visit?m=35&q=2184433

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This open-source personal crypto-key vault wants two things: To make the web safer ... and your donations

Joe Harrison
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They haven't made it easy

A gadget like this is exactly what I need, but bank transfer to Sweden is quite expensive in fees isn't it? Could have been paypal or something more convenient.

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SPY FRY: Smart meters EXPLODE in Californian power surge

Joe Harrison
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Smart meters are for one thing

When the power generating capacity starts to run out it means rolling blackouts. Smart meters mean selective rolling blackouts - home A can be targetted while leaving the power on in home B. What could possibly go wrong :(

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The coming of DAB+: Stereo eluded the radio star

Joe Harrison
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Satellite

In the UK an ordinary Sky dish and a cheap receiver gets a huge number of radio stations with proper sound quality. Even more if you use a 60cm dish pointed at say Hotbird 13.0E. I can't believe anyone would bother with DAB apart from portability.

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Just WALK IN and buy an Apple Watch. Are you mad?

Joe Harrison
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Of course

One does not simply walk into Mordor

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HTC One M9 Android smartphone: Like a M8 with a squinty eye

Joe Harrison
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Just give people what they want

Not everyone wants exactly the same feature set from a phone and there are the endless wars about removable batteries and do they matter, SD card slots, and so on.

But surely everyone knows what they DON'T want? Weirdo interfaces that are not much like Android, being stranded on old operating systems because the manufacturer reneged on promise of upgrade to the new one, I could go on. Especially nobody wants to upgrade to a phone which is not even as good as the previous. How hard is it to at least get these things right.

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I helped Amazon.com find an XSS hole and all I got was this lousy t-shirt

Joe Harrison
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Fiver

I explained to Tesco once that under some circumstances their website would fail to use SSL when serving the "type in your credit card number" checkout page. They sent me a five-quid voucher

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BT Home Hub SIP backdoor blunder blamed for VoIP fraud

Joe Harrison
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Re: Whats the point of home SIP anyway?

SIP at home works well and the benefits are mainly the cheaper calls. I had the complete Virgin Media package but the monthly bills were horrendous because of the family yakking all day on the expensive VM phone line. After I made a one-off purchase of a Sipura ATA I was massively better off.

I did consider if the new setup implied any extra security adjustments but soon decided it was not worth much effort as my maximum financial exposure would be the balance of a tenner's credit on my Sipgate account.

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Samsung puts eight-core processor IN A WATCH

Joe Harrison
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what are these watches actually for

To me any watch function that replicates what already happens on your phone is not much use. For example if it displays an incoming SMS on your wrist, OK but so what, you could just look at your phone screen in the traditional way.

A watch definitely has the edge over your phone when it comes to sensing things from your body such as pulse/temperature or movements. If there is a good camera though then that is one more thing; covert recording not so easy using your phone but a lot more natural via your watch.

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Attack of the Digital People: The BBC goes fully Bong

Joe Harrison
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So true

That comment is absolutely spot on. Next time you meet a hand-waving 2.0 airhead just ask them innocently "Oh sounds great. So what does digital mean?" They go truly spare, especially if you imply that you too are part of the club by sharing with them that "my cooker has a digital clock thing" to demonstrate your own digital creds.

I've hated these people since the 1990s when I was regularly powerpointed-at by wannabee grandees of the "Information Superhighway".

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Forget viruses: Evil USB drive 'fries laptops with a power surge'

Joe Harrison
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Re: USB in the wall, equivalent of a glory hole or bath house.

New York must be a safe and orderly place; round here the youf would bash em off the wall before the cement was dry.

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UK call centre linked to ‘millions’ of nuisance robo-calls raided by ICO

Joe Harrison
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What really annoys me

When you are roaming outside the UK it actually costs money to answer one of these calls.

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