We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,259 News Articles

Oftel puts its foot down

Mobile text scammers will be canned

Telco watchdog Oftel has told text message scammers they will be disconnected.

After warning customers to beware of premium rate text message scams back in July 2001, telco watchdog Oftel has now gone one step further, issuing a harsh warning to senders that they will be disconnected.

Companies running premium rate scams trick mobile phone users into replying to SMS messages, usually in the form of competition questions, and then charge them at a premium rate.

But under a new power awarded by the Independent Committee for the Supervision of Standards of Telephone Industry Services (Icstis), Oftel will now be able to disconnect the operator once it ignores a request to terminate the service.

"There have been cases of competition lines where callers run up high bills but never receive their prizes," said David Edmond, director general of telecommunications at Oftel. "These new tough powers will enable Oftel to support Icstis' work to stamp out these blatant abuses quickly and protect consumers."

The new powers apply to premium-rate services on 090-prefixed phone numbers from fixed and mobile phones as well as premium rate text messages.


IDG UK Sites

Best Black Friday 2014 tech deals: Get bargains on smartphones, tablets, laptops and more

IDG UK Sites

What the Internet of Things will look like in 2015: homes will get smarter, people might get fitter

IDG UK Sites

Artist creates a geometric rave in a chapel for The House of St Barnabus

IDG UK Sites

Mac mini (Late 2014) 1.4 GHz review: Mac mini is sort of upgradable, but is it any good as it is?