Spam SMS. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)
Cape Town – South Africans have had enough of spam, based on the reaction from Fin24 users.
Fin24 recently reported that South Africans get up to 50 000 unsolicited SMSes per day and Fin24 users Schoeman and Grahame stated that they receive five and two per week respectively from undisclosed numbers.
Fin24 user Ingrid takes on spammers head on:
“Interestingly, I began receiving spam ads by SMS a few months after migrating my number to Telkom, from MTN, with whom I had had an account for approximately 20 years.
“This poses the question: Does Telkom disregard the explicit instruction subscribers must tick on their own application form ie No marketing to be received by cell... or does MTN sell numbers that have migrated away from its own customer base, out of sheer pique?
“Most of the spam advertising comes through by SMS around 02:00 – 03:00 and is often sent from overseas numbers, making an appropriate response difficult or expensive. Not to mention having woken me to my great annoyance.
“Wherever a local number is given during daytime, such as for a ‘special’ I call and lambaste them. They claim not to know anything about it. The last one received was for Ariel washing powder and I responded assuring them their actions had guaranteed I would never buy their product. No response.
Fin24 user Clinton described spam as a “virus” and called for action to fight the scourge.
“It has to be seen as a virus in our society this spam caller thing or every second company wanting to sell you something.
“How they get our numbers is still a big issue. My Vodacom number which is in my backup phone most likely gets spam callers about 10 times a week as it is an Apple phone you can block most of them, private numbers or no numbers cannot be blocked.
“My everyday phone is also starting to get its fair share of these spammers strangely enough just after my first upgrade on the Cell C network. It is also an iPhone so about four of them are blocked. Strange that a company is so void of mind to spam contact or contact you on a cold sale style.
“I do feel very sorry for them. Never works with me,” Clinton added.
Spam can also be easily exploited for fraud, according to Fin24 user Mark.
“I receive spam calls daily; in addition: For the last three weeks every day re: An Indian voice saying he’s from Microsoft (fraud). My reply: 'Apple user'.
“There is no means to actively enforce marketing agencies to desist, so ‘controls’ are meaningless.
“There needs to be a public forum where the public can fight back. I make a point of not supporting companies that spam me. This is telephone spam, next is internet spam (which is waaaaay out of hand).”
Fin24 user Tony shared his strategy that sees him gets few spam SMSes.
“I aggressively defend my privacy with minimal social media use and use of dummy email addresses and/ or telephone numbers where this information is asked for but not really needed.”