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Charged for text messages abroad I didn't send

Ro88
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I recently got charge for the travel bolt on for multiple days when abroad. 

 

I contacted o2 and told them I had not used my phone other than on Wifi. I have an Andriod. 

 

I was told the charges related specifically to me texting. 10 text messages they said. I don't send text messages at all! They confirmed it wouldn't be for random unwanted texts I sometimes receive. 

 

After 110 minutes on chat with them they decided they would refund me almost all of the cost, £83. I am still paying £7 for some costs I do not understand. 

 

The £7 I couldn't care about even if it still feels pretty unjust. The o2 chat guy was adamant I must have text. The sim data can't be wrong was his attitude. From memory I didn't send any text. It would be really out of character for me to (and definitely not 10!). Second, on reviewing my message history I have no outgoing text messages. So what the hell I ask?!

 

I've removed my sim now. Assuming nothing can happen now but it's a real mystery and o2 being so adamant I did and refusing to acknowledge I hadn't sent anything was quite frustrating as they provided no solution for it not happening again - hence SIM removal. 

 

Any thoughts? (it's nothing to do with mobile data or wifi!) 

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MI5
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@Ro88 

Some apps and phone features (WhatsApp for example) send silent sms messages to register with servers so they know where the phone is.

heck your app permissions to see which are allowed to send messages and if using visual voicemail, turn it off.

I have no affiliation whatsoever with O2 or any subsidiary companies. Comments posted are entirely of my own opinion. This is not Customer Service so we are unable to help with account specific issues.

Currently using:
OnePlus 6 (O2 & Sfr), Z3 Tablet (Three UK), iPhone 8+ (EE)
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Jon30
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I have had exactly the same issue while I was in Colombia last month. 

 

My case got escalated and O2 were adamant I was sending texts because on their side, it appears to be the case. The compromise was that they removed the £6 a day for the days that a texts was sent and instead I pay the standard rate charge for sending a text - it's not ideal as I definitely didn't send texts but seemed fair if something is appearing on their side (and less hassle).

 

I advise you call them and speak to them. 

 

I'm currently trying to find out how texts are being sent from my phone but the permissions list doesn't seem to give any indication to any apps doing it. 

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Ro88
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Thanks @MI5 - I checked and the only two with permissions to send texts other than texts itself is Google or Google Play. So perhaps one of those is sending some data in the background or I've got some sort of spyware! 

 

@Jon30 Thanks. I think this is what my residual £7 of cost is, the charge for the text messages rather than a £5 daily travel bundle. Same for me regarding permissions lists unless its google. 

 

For anyone else reading this adamant they didn't send messages, it took me 110 frustrating minutes on O2 chat to get them to agree to £83 of credit from £90 of additional cost on a normally £10 phone contract. I asked them to check if sending text message was something I historically did too (knowing I didn't). They were convinced the data wouldn't be wrong and whilst I understand some technologies have very low error rates I am not totally convinced something on their end isn't causing this issue. 

 

No solution here unfortunately but hopefully you can get most of your money back too if struggling with the same issue,. 

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Ro88
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So I've got to the bottom of the issue. 

 

When logging in to some public WIFI locations in Turkey I had to put my phone number in to receive a text message with a code. Even though I am receiving a text message (not chargeable) not sending one, by agreeing to the WIFI request I am some how giving permission to be charged for this text on behalf of the WIFI provider. It's like I am agreeing for them to charge my phone number with the cost of sending a message I guess or at least that's how it's being seen. 

 

Annoying as most public WIFI places in Turkey ask for this so really difficult to get online without getting charged! It's not such a huge issue with the 30p charge it only really because of the travel bundle charge of £6 that I've ended up with a much more expensive issue.

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MI5
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Thanks for letting us know @Ro88 

I have no affiliation whatsoever with O2 or any subsidiary companies. Comments posted are entirely of my own opinion. This is not Customer Service so we are unable to help with account specific issues.

Currently using:
OnePlus 6 (O2 & Sfr), Z3 Tablet (Three UK), iPhone 8+ (EE)
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