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Ofcom investigation: Possible misuse of 087 nos (Read 3,459 times)
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Ofcom investigation: Possible misuse of 087 nos
Mar 28th, 2007 at 12:58pm


Own-initiative investigation into the possible misuse of 087 numbers

Ofcom has received over 400 complaints about possible scams on the 087 number range, including scams involving:

a. messages left on consumers’ phones, urging them to call an 087 number to collect a parcel, message or prize which is waiting for them. Consumers advise that upon calling the number, they receive a recorded message which they are charged for until they hang up or are cut off. Several different organisations and 087 numbers have been mentioned by consumers.
b. rogue advertising of 087 numbers as contact numbers for public service organisations, without the knowledge or approval of the organisation affected.  Using the 087 number, calls are still routed to the advertised destination, but a share of the revenue is generated for the rogue advertiser of the 087 number. This is of particular concern to organisations which have identified rogue 087 numbers being wrongly conveyed as legitimate contact numbers, when in fact they have nothing to do with the organisation concerned.

Point b appears to refer to those websites that list restaurants and the like and advertise (often) an 0871 number. There are quite a few of these, and many have been submitted for listing in the Saynoto0870 database of alternative numbers.

This was discussed on 0871 forwarding calls without permission thread.
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The Forum Ghost of NonGeographicalMan<b
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Re: Ofcom investigation: Possible misuse of 087 no
Reply #1 - Mar 29th, 2007 at 9:19am
And why does Ofcom not consider it to be an abuse requiring an "Own Initiative Investigation" for customers to ring a company expecting to get through to their billing or technical support department right away only to be placed in a queue with no indication at all of that queue length and then be charged £2 or £3 on their phone bill that they were not expecting to pay to queue for 30 or 40 minutes? Roll Eyes Angry Cry  And that's before we take into account pain, anguish suffering and consequential lost time to the caller of having to waste that 40 minutes of their lives.

It seems that the only reason perpetually customer feedback ignoring Ofcom has been prepared to act here is because the government agencies like the Passport Agency, who run their own scam lines on 0870, are now complaining loudly that they are losing all their own 0870 revenue share to scammers like Passport Advice on 0871.

As with the tv 09 prize quiz lines it is pointless for Ofcom to investigate the individual cases (which should be done by the Police if it involves impersonation) as the problem is actually the whole damn system which allows people to be encouraged to ring phone numbers for which they do not know the cost in advance and/or do not get told the cost of immediately after the call.  The whole 084/7 09 system also allows other members of the household to steal from the bill payer without the bill payer's consent to those payments being made.

Isn't it just so typical of utterly useless Ofcom to start an "Own Initiative Investigation" in response to a telco operator complaint but never to do so in response to thousands of complaints from the public about 084/7 numbers that keep callers on hold from 20 minutes to an hour with no advance indication this is likely to happen.  Roll Eyes Angry Angry Angry Angry Angry
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« Last Edit: Mar 29th, 2007 at 9:44am by NGMsGhost »  

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