Feeds

Authorities swoop on illicit Wolverhampton SPAM FARM

Hundreds of SIM cards being brutally battery-farmed to pump out pink meat

The essential guide to IT transformation

UK data privacy experts have raided an SMS spam farm blamed for spewing out more than 350,000 nuisance messages to mobiles.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) seized hundreds of SIM cards on Thursday, after raiding a SIM farm in offices in Wolverhampton. Initial estimates suggest the impounded kit could have been used to send over 350,000 nuisance text messages - but the total may have been more than a million.

Computer equipment and paperwork were seized, and a residential address was also searched as part of an ongoing investigation by the ICO.

Andy Curry, an enforcement manager at the ICO, said that if found responsible a "sizeable fine" would be levied against the alleged mobile spammers.

The raid was prompted by intelligence supported by reports using the "7726" tool, that allows mobile phone users to report spam text messages by forwarding the messages to 7726 (spelling out SPAM). The facility works through all four main UK Mobile operators (EE, Vodafone, Telefonica O2 & 3) and has been running for just under a year.

“Nuisance spam messages and phone calls are escalating in the UK," said Neil Cook, CTO of Cloudmark, the firm which provides the spam reporting service. "The raid on spammers by the ICO is a fantastic example of how the GSMA Spam Reporting Service was crucial in delivering the knowledge required to shut down another company taking advantage of subscribers’ trust in mobile messaging services."

The bust follows an announcement by the ICO on Tuesday that a Yorkshire direct marketing firm and a Devon PPI claims company were told they face fines totalling £140,000 for breaching electronic marketing rules. The companies were linked to thousands of nuisance marketing calls that resulted in complaints to the ICO and the Telephone Preference Service. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Rupert Murdoch says Google is worse than the NSA
Mr Burns vs. The Chocolate Factory, round three!
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Germany 'accidentally' snooped on John Kerry and Hillary Clinton
Dragnet surveillance picks up EVERYTHING, USA, m'kay?
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
Think crypto hides you from spooks on Facebook? THINK AGAIN
Traffic fingerprints reveal all, say boffins
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
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.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
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.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.