It is in the news that the UK government is making a significant investment in "a clampdown on the use of cold calls to sell financial products". This involves significant investment in specialist skills:
The new fraud strategy, a response to the massive growth of web- and phone-based scams, will also result in what was billed as 400 new specialist investigators across police and the National Crime Agency recruited as part of a revamp for how the crime is investigated.
I have a UK mobile phone, and I get fairly frequent cold calls from geographic UK landline numbers. If I straight up make a GDPR Subject Access Request they invariably hang up. If I keep them talking I get all sorts of stories, the only commonality being that they involve lies. The last one was noteworthy in that the caller accused me of gas lighting them when I read out from the Companies House Web site that the company they claimed to work for was wound up five years ago. I do not know what the scam is, but I am sure it is a scam and the GDPR breach would seem to serve as "Al Capone's taxes", in that it is not really the problem but is easy to prove beyond reasonable doubt.
It seems that if the government wanted to make this activity a non-viable way of making money it would be trivial. Someone has paid for that telephone call, that entity must have a bank account that is known to the telephone operators. The GDPR breach seems clear, and the maximum penalty is £17.5 million. If the UK state wanted to "clampdown on the use of cold calls" it would not take a team of 400 sepalists to find these numbers, find out who is paying the bill from the telephone operator and start enforcement action. The risk reward ratio seems so unbalanced that it could be stopped tomorrow.
Why is cold calling still an issue in this day and age, given that the government cares about it?