Feeds

Oftel gets tough with mobile phone spammers

Disconnected

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Oftel has issued a warning shot across the bows of rip-off premium rate text message spam merchants. It will order mobile phone networks to disconnect spammers if they ignore a "request" from the premium rate service watchdog ICSTIS to stop offending services.

This is not quite the same as banning mobile phone spam per se, but the Oftel order goes some way towards stamping out spam in its most egregious form. We say some, because, the rip-off premium rate reply fax merchants are operating still in the UK, despite apparent regulation.

So how does the premium rate rip-off work for mobile phones. It's pretty simple, and you have to be pretty simple to fall for it. (But who says laws can't protect the stupid too?)

You get an unsolicited text inviting you to reply -maybe it's a competition you've won that you never entered, or maybe there's an 'adult' (nudge, nudge)chat line you're asked to join. You reply - it's just cost you £ 1.50.

The text message spam scam is a recent variant on tricks practised on landlines, where you get called up by a real live person. You are told to ring up a number to win your prize; you ring, you're kept hanging on the line, all the while racking up premium charges; your prize never arrives. Oftel is extending its powers of serving disconnection to telcos to fixed line premium rate services too.

Numbers beginning 090 are premium lines.

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Linux Foundation says many Linux admins and engineers are certifiable
Floats exam program to help IT employers lock up talent
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.