MD11Engineer
Topic Author
Posts: 13916
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2003 5:25 am

Cell Phone Scam

Thu Jul 22, 2004 1:48 am

Somebody tried a scam on me today. My cellphone rang and stopped after one ring, before I could respond. I looked at the "missed call" message and fortunately I checked the telephone number of the caller before I responded. It was (camouflaged by adding the country code of Germany) a 0190 number. In Germany these numbers are usually rented out to businesees, who charge for services through the telephone bill. Theoretically one call to such a number can cost you up to $1000,- per call, no matter how long. The person deliberately tried to make me call back and would have then charged me a huge amount, and I would have had the onus in court to prove that I was scammed.
Do there exist similar scams in other countries?

Jan
Je Suis Charlie et je suis Ahmet aussi
 
iakobos
Posts: 3255
Joined: Wed Aug 06, 2003 6:22 pm

RE: Cell Phone Scam

Thu Jul 22, 2004 2:01 am

MD11
There is a regulatory authority in Germany, I am sure they would be pleased to hear your story.
I dont think they can charge you that much though, it is in fact the cellular operator that charges you according to a contract he has with the 0190 e-business, I am quite sure thereby that the charges are within limits set by the regulation authority.
 
ben
Posts: 1369
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 1999 9:27 pm

RE: Cell Phone Scam

Thu Jul 22, 2004 2:06 am

Yes it's been happening here a lot recently.

Another scam is a text message saying something like "Someone fancies you. To find out who, call 09078436..etc" or "You have a message waiting. Call to retrieve it".

The authorities are always slow and impotent when reacting to things like that.

Smart people like you will notice it's a scam. Thousands are stupid and will call back. The scammers get their money and run. Easy.
 
MD11Engineer
Topic Author
Posts: 13916
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2003 5:25 am

RE: Cell Phone Scam

Thu Jul 22, 2004 2:13 am

Unfortunately I ereased the number already, next time something like this happens, I´ll report them. They are clearly preying on people, who just call back without checking the number.
BTW, do you also get unsolicited calls from telemarketers? I find them extremely annoying, especially if I´ve been working nightshift and those guys wake me up. Since telemarketing is illegal here, unless you contacted them first, then it is considered an ongoing business, they even lie and tell me that I contacted them a few weeks ago. Last time one person tried to sell me a lottery subscription, claiming that I played the lottery with them before and that was how they got my telephone number, but I DON´T gamble out of principle. I never played a lottery since I was a teenager and started calculating the odds.

Jan
Je Suis Charlie et je suis Ahmet aussi
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: Cell Phone Scam

Thu Jul 22, 2004 2:24 am

Not had cellphone scams yet, could be because my number is unlisted.

Telemarketeers, don't have me start about them. At least one a day on average, and always for the same few companies I've told I don't want their products a hundred times already.

Sadly telemarketing is not just legal here, the network operators actively sell contact information (phone numbers, addresses AND names) to telemarketeers for big money.
And unless your number is unlisted they're perfectly legal to do so. There is a volluntary do not call list but as with spammers I have severe doubts as to whether putting my name on it won't just make it worse (they require phone number, email address, name, phone number, employer, salary, etc. etc. which to me sounds like a scam to get more information on you so they can scam you even more).
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