n. An automated phone system problem in which people with certain kinds of voices produce sounds identical to phone tones such as a number or the pound or star key, so the system assumes a key has been pressed and processes it accordingly, which results in the person getting cut off or moved to the next step.
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Talk-off occurs when the device tries to translate voice to digits. Some people with gravelly voices trigger invalid conversions that can mess up a transaction. I had several of these units translate my voice into DTMF tones during testing. …

To prevent talk-off problems, most of these cards can be configured to ignore single and doublepulses, which solves the problem but costs you two digits.
—Stuart Warren, “The $2400 Club,” Computer Telephony, February 01, 1995
1993 (earliest)
Bicom's (Trumbull, CT) DSPbased 4LS and 4LSB provide advanced features at low cost. Both boards include high performance DTMF detection to eliminate annoying "talkoff."
—“PC board bonanza,” Teleconnect, December 01, 1993
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