$10 Text Messages? Mobile Users Beware
I was just paying my Verizon Wireless bill online and I saw some extra charges I didn’t recognize, and the total was higher than I expected.
So after seeing a bill noted in the “Usage Charges” section for $9.99, I called Verizon. I have a data plan with unlimited txt and voice, so I’m thinking – what other charges?
After some checking, it looks like one of our phones received a “Premium” text message and we got billed $10 for it. WTH?! CONSUMER SCAM ALERT!
Verizon says that this is the latest wave of phone fraud by some to send a big text (image, video, or ringtone) to a phone, and somewhere in the terms/conditions they say we agreed to the charges. Turns out this is the latest “Phone Scam” similar to what we saw with Long-Distance providers a few years back. The Federal government has already started to take action against this. If this happens to you, there IS a dispute process!
As a consumer, you need to know that you can proactively BLOCK this from ever happening. If you’ve already experienced this for yourself, your provider should have already told you they can block it, takes 10 seconds. I recommend calling your wireless company and asking them to “Block Premium SMS Messages” from all of your wireless devices.
For VZW customers to contest the charges you can either call 1-877-866-0631 or go online to www.premiumsmsrefunds.com. The phone number is a fed. call center, the website is for Verizon customers. Other mobile providers might have their own websites for filing a claim.
You will need to know these 3 things (your mobile company will give you):
1) Name of Vendor who is claiming the charge
2) The Vendor Code (e.g. – 66107)
3) The Date of the Message (month, day)
By Louis Wing
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