Feeds

Watchdog relieves iPhone 5 scammers of £10k

Dodgy adverts earns fine from premium-rate line regulator

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

A British company who offered "iPhone 5s" to punters has been slapped with a £10,000 fine by regulator PhonePayPlus, which ruled that the adverts for the non-existent phone were misleading.

According to the judgment published today, the Bumbalee service run by Mobile Minded BV used "prizes" such as the iPhone 5 to lure punters into signing up to a premium subscription service that charged them £2 every time they received a message.

In the adverts investigated by PhonePayPlus, the regulator for the UK's premium phone line industry, Mobile Minded offered £150 of "free" Morrisons vouchers in adverts put on Facebook in September/October 2011 – which turned out to be as illusory as the iPhone 5.

Morrisons disclaimed any knowledge of a vouchers deal with Bumbalee and the monitors found that it was impossible to claim the vouchers. Punters clicking on the offer were asked to fill in a survey, before being taken to the subscription site and offered the opportunity to win an iPhone 5.

Entrants paid to do surveys or quizzes and were charged £2 a message with five messages sent a week.

PhonePayPlus estimated that the scammers made between £50,000 and £100,000 out of the service.

As well as the £10,000 fine, the company have two weeks to make all their advertising compliant and have been commanded to refund all complainants for the full amount of money spent by them on the service.

Mobile Minded BV have not responded to our request for comment. ®

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

More from The Register

next story
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
Four fake Google haxbots hit YOUR WEBSITE every day
Goog the perfect ruse to slip into SEO orfice
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
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 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.