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I just received a text message from a number I don’t know. The text message read ‘ FreeMsg: Reminder. You are subscribed to Books4you for £4.50 every week from Lasevia until you text STOP to 83463. HELP? 03300538806‘ I instantly googled the number and discovered it’s a scam. Lots of people have revived this scam and cost them hundreds of pounds. But most of the chat online is old messages from 2016 and no one seemed to have a solution then. Allot of talk about having to change your number number which just isn’t an option for me and that the networks couldn’t help. I don’t want to be charged and I’m scared to reply stop. Any advice is appricated. Thank you
83463 is a shortcode which regularly features in reports of Payforit scams
I'm sorry you have become a victim of one of these scams. It is quite possible that your number was provided via a rogue App on your ‘phone, or you may have clicked on an innocent looking Ad while browsing the web.
You need to be aware that while you are connected to the internet via mobile data, your number may be passed by O2 to third parties for charging purposes. The mechanism by which this happens is called 'Payforit'. This can’t happen while you are connected by WiFi.
Once the third party has your number they can send you chargeable text messages and, very unfairly in my opinion, it will be your job to argue for a refund!
The Payforit mechanism was intended to make it easy for consumers to purchase goods and services and have them charged to their 'phone bill. Unfortunately Payforit has proven to be very insecure and hardly a day goes by without someone reporting another scam.
I have put details of how to deal with these scams on my website at http://payforitsucks.co.uk.
Unfortunately O2 and all of the other networks have no incentive to bring these scams to an end, as they receive a share of the income from them.
The steps you ought to be taking are (with links to detailed instructions):
Let me know if can offer any further help or advice. These scams are a disgrace to the mobile communications industry.
They do sometimes make a final charge for the STOP text, it depends on the particular company. I believe it should be legally a free text nowadays.
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