Help, I’m being gouged for spam text messages

Check your cellphone bills for pricey text message charges. Short-code messages, as they’re called, usually have a string of numbers followed by a name like Premium Text Trivia.

I did a column last week and asked readers to send stories. You’ll find a bunch below.

The CBC has done a few television news items lately, here.

You get lured in by doing an online contest, which asks you for your cellphone number. You then receive — by text — a PIN number. Once you enter that PIN number on the website, you’ve subscribed.

Here’s a link to the $12.3 million (U.S.) settlement of a class action by m-Qube Inc., one of the biggest offenders. The lawsuit alleged there were not adequate safeguards in place to ensure that customers were only billed for services they agreed to purchase.

In Canada, the wireless companies insist that it’s not their problem. They blame customers for giving away cellphone numbers without reading the fine print.

But when reading these comments, watch for a pattern. Those who make noise often get refunds or freebies to compensate for the unauthorized text messages.

Author: Ellen Roseman

Consumer advocate and personal finance author and instructor.

114 thoughts on “Help, I’m being gouged for spam text messages”

  1. Thanks Ellen Roseman for creating this forum. We are all victimized by this new scam technology and they get away with it stealing thousands or hundred of thousand dollars from us.

    Is there any good lawyer out there taking these companies to courts? I think they are waiting for you (lawyers) to challenge them. Those are real criminals, so why can’t we stop them?

    I know there are holes in our law which allowing them to pursue their action but there must be a way to stop them. Even the mobile carriers like Bell and Rogers, Fido are playing along.

    These carriers, instead of helping protect their clients, seem to get benefit from these scammers and ignore and blame us (victims)….

    Please, lawyers, do something. We’ll win if we stand for it.

  2. Same problem from fido account, the charge was $2 for each “message”, which I have no idea how it happened. I agree which Bob, lawyers I will stand for you for any action against this kind of SCAM

  3. Rogers wireless is facilitating a widespread fraud on its customers, as are other wireless providers.

    Rogers billed me for $13 on my March 2011 bill and my husband noticed it. A Rogers rep on 11 April was aware of much dissatisfaction but “could do nothing about it since the company they are billing for is a ‘legitimate company.’ ”

    Rogers make at least $3 on each month’s recurring charge.

    My husband phoned the 1-877-323-2226 # on the Roger’s billing detail, as suggested by their rep. A call centre in India asked him for my cell # b4 the rep would reply about the process of the fraud and he refused.

    I also refused to send a cancellation to the perps, since this could imply that I subscribed in the first place.

    Presumably, this motown.ca outfit got my cell # when they sent me a text that I had won an IPAD and would I provide my cell #.

    I can’t recall doing so even to collect my phantom IPAD – and even if I did under the scam, what does this have to do with my being billed $13 per month?

    The CRTC and phone companies are allowing “free enterprise” scamming of Canadians.

    We did tell Rogers that we want a credit for such unauthorized charges, that we have not authorized Rogers to bill us for 3rd party charges and that we are reporting this as a fraud to their in-house fraud department, which the rep agreed to pass on.

    Victims should refuse to pay. They should also write to the Rogers CEO, the CRTC and their MP.

    As I was writing this, a text message arrived from motown saying they are “sorry to see you go” and “no more charges will apply.”

    So, Rogers must have asked this outfit to cancel and now I wonder if there is a strong business relationship between the two outfits.

    I also want a credit for the current charge[s].

    HELEN

  4. yes, it is happening with a purpose. CALL YOUR CELL PHONE PROVIDER, THREATEN THEM THAT YOU WILL DISCONNECT THE SERVICE. THEY HAVE CREDITED MY $18.0 DOLLARS RIGHT AWAY (9-SMS).

  5. I have been scammed much in the same way that has been described above. I thought that this was a recent phenomena and much to my surprise it has been going on since at least November 2009.
    The cell phone service providers are aware of this scam and they let this happen probably because they are getting a cut out of this. But the CCTS is also aware and is moving to correct it, why I don’t know.

    Why is there no will to correct this? Why isn’t anyone willing to launch a class action?

  6. I agree. I think the only way to resolve this matter is to bring a class action.

    I’ve been in communication with one of these companies that acknowledges I never signed up for the service, “a miracle in itself,” but then tells me I was only approved for a refund of less than half the amount of charges on my Fido bill.

    Can you believe that? I could not. What does that tell you? That just makes me more than ever want to get these guys.

    Come on, people, let’s do somthing about it.

  7. So, I finally left FIDO and opted to take over my daughter’s plan with Bell so she could get an IPhone also with Bell and also under the same account. I just phoned Bell to have $53 of short code programs removed from the first bill. When I went back to a previous bill, the one my daughter had already paid, I noticed an additional $56 dollars. My daughter didnt question it as she was in the middle of exams, I did. Fortunately Bell cooperated, but my sentiments are the same as others here, I didnt ask for it!

  8. I was just stung by this scam for $100 OF Airtime, I have tried to get it back but the company said that I requested and validated a pin # to activate the service, I have no knowledge of and request and I certainly did not activate any pin #, I have had to change my cell # of 5 years to stop the charges, I have contacted the company and they were rude, ignorant and dishonest. I will do what ever to tell people about them.

  9. Can anyone tell me if you have successfully solved the problem? I got the charge this month of $60 for 30 msgs (2$/msg).

    I called Rogers, they asked to call the number shown in the bill. I call the number on the bill, they only have voice mail.

    I emailed the so-called company, R D Media (ZEMGO), to remove my number, they still texted me. I called the number on their website, it’s a fax number.

    How to resolve this? Is the only way to change the phone number?
    Thanks.

  10. I’ve been having a bad feeling about these text messages coming in every single day until I had to cancel my text service from Rogers.

    When I received the bill, sure enough, there was an $18 charge on my bill for 9 text messages. I didn’t play or answer any of those texts. I guess the charges would’ve been larger if I didn’t disconnect my text feature from my cell phone.

    Rogers told me “there is nothing they can do”, so I phoned the 1-877 number. His name is Nikolas in Netherlands, who told me to send an application for refund through e-mail. The refusal of refund was sent to my e-mail almost immediately after I sent it.

    I made another call after that. This time, a fellow with a different name answered. He was in Spain, but the funny thing was that he sounded exactly the same (with accent and everything) as the first phone rep.

    Of course, they try to tell me there is nothing they can do and he didn’t even agree to give me a phone number of the financial department of the company (only e-mail), and I don’t know if there’s such a thing.

    Anyway, they’re truly a bad scammer, in my opinion. I also feel frustrated that the big corporations like Rogers or TELUS can do nothing to filter through these types of criminals to protect their own consumers.

  11. Hi all, You may want to do as I did. I logged a complaint with CCTS online at http://www.ccts-cprst.ca/ or by mail P.O. Box 81088 Ottawa, ON K1P 1B1, telephone 1-888-221-1687.

    CCTS is mandated to investigate and find a solution to help in some situations like this. Bell just contacted me and offered a credit for 2/3 of the extra charge for the short code messages.

    I have not decided if I will accept this offer yet. Will let you all know. We need to stop this kind of daylight robbing.

  12. I have a similar story. The cell phone is permanently in my possession and I am not insane enough to sign up for something stupid.

    I got a bill of third party bill of $44 for 22 messages. I talked to RD Media and they told me someone may have hacked into my cell to access that pin number, which they have sent to subscribe through web site.

    This notion is ridiculous, as I never lend my cell phone to anyone, not even to my family members.

    Rogers was unable to reverse the third party charges. RD Media told me to write an email explaining the situation, but they were unable to reverse the charged amount.

    This looks to me a scam. It’s putting additional strain on cell phone users for unwanted/uncalled charges.

  13. I had the same experience. On June 1st, when i opened the Firefox, a message appeared, misleading it from Firefox and saying it is their 10th year anniversary, and giving out a promotion.

    It then asked for a question and a cell phone numver to confirm it. Then it sent a text message to the cell phone and at this time it stated there will be a $2 charge.

    Since then, I have been getting several text messages from this number 55055, which I don’t even open, but get charged $2 each time. The cell phone company could not stop it.

    How can they charge us $2 per message which we did not approve or even open?

    They just gave me the numver of Zemgo, 1-977-777-3891, but there is only a voice mail which ask you to key in the cell number to unsubscribe.

    I did that thrice but to no avail. I also tried to reply with a STOP message which was effectively blocked by Zemgo.

    It is up to the cell phone companies and CRTC to take strong measures and stop these culprits and bring them to justice and refund all the monies they have defrauded from us.

  14. Please, somebody from the government, help us to get our money back.

    I am a poor immigrant to Canada. I was on vacation back in my country when I was charged for over $200 by third PARTY SMS.

    Fido cannot refund it and help. How it is possible in country like Canada!!!??? Where is customers’ protection? This is illegal.

  15. I am also getting text messages from 886-88 and they ask me stupid questions. I don’t even look at them, just delete them.

    Then I get my bill from BC Mobility and I have been charged $28 for these messages. I don’t know how to stop them.

    I will be contacting BC Mobility to see what I can do. Even if I change my cell number, I will be charged for that service, but it still will be cheaper than paying $28 a month for who knows how long.

    Anyone know who this is????

  16. Just found out, if you get the messages from 886-68, you can call to get yourself removed.

    Calling 1-877-777-3891 only works to cancel the subscription, but not get your charges refunded. This number is to a company called RD Media and they are located somewhere in Spain.

    Or reply to the text message: Stop. This will work also.

    Just tried this, I hope it works.

  17. Urgent charged $719, mostly for texting on son’s last phone bill, even though we had what we thought was a unlimited text plan.

    I had the same issues for two months. Received texts at $5 per text, which when I called Rogers customer retention, they credited back.

    This month, I had a much bigger issue. My Rogers statement for my son’s wireless phone was $719. Most of it was a charge for approximately 2,400 text messages at 25 cents each, plus taxes, for response texts he sent to the United States.

    He and I were under the impression that we had unlimited text messaging, not just within Canada.

    When I called customer retention, they basically said we should have known that we only had Canada-wide unlimited.

    Because I am a so-called good customer that spends $400 to $500 a month for all my Rogers services, the best they could do for me is charge me half.

    I really took offence to this, as they are offering a service where you actually get unlimited U.S. texting while roaming for $50 a month.

    Sad part is they made me feel like I should be happy that they are knocking the bill down to $300, which is 6 x more than the monthly charge.

    If I was not locked in with all my services, I would be making a change. But they know you are locked in and take advantage of you wherever they can.

    I asked if we are aware that we are sending text messages to the U.S. when we are doing so and the answer is no.

    You may think you are texting someone in Canada, but when you send a text to the U.S., you don’t know it is not part of your monthly unlimited plan until you get a huge bill (like the one I received).

    I wish there was a service out there or more info on what to watch out for when dealing with these kind of issues.

    If anyone has any suggestions, please contact me sfranciskovic@rogers.com.

  18. Honestly, expecting a company to sue these third party companies is like asking a knife manufacturer to sue someone that used their knife to kill someone.

    People like to believe these cell phone companies have loads of money, but if they found out how much cell phone networks in Canada cost to run and always keep updated, they would be shocked.

    They don’t think about how fruitless it would be to try to go after these third party companies.

    People say that they can’t see the charges till they appear on the bill, which is baloney. Most companies have websites where you can view your unbilled usage.

    People also believe that cancelling their account will stop the charges, but it won’t. Every company gets hit by these.

    You’re likely to get a number that was already signed up for the subscription because someone else decided to cancel a number with the texts.

    I think I’m gonna call Maytag the next time I put my clothes in the dryer on the wrong temp and shrink them.

    Come on, people. Yes, it is scammy, but take the 2 min to reply stop and it will be over and done with.

  19. I disagree with tired CR’s comment about unbilled usage shown on the website.

    I recently saw a charge of $60 on my July invoice due to Third Party charge from two Text message companies (IQ Quiz @$5/week and Oxygen8 @$5/every 2 days).

    I never saw these charges in my online usage before they showed up on the July invoice. I called the 1-800 number from these 2 companies a few days ago to stop, but I expect that I will still receive some charges in my August invoice, and yet still nothing shows about them in my Rogers online account.

    I admitted that I did see the text messages from these 2 companies in my iPhone, but I thought they were SPAM text messages, and didn’t want to respond and be charged, so I ignored them.

    It’s not until I saw the charges in my July invoice and did some research that I realized that I was scammed.

    What I don’t understand is that why the wireless companies just accept and pass the 3rd party charges to a user’s wireless account without the user’s explicit consent and approval.

    The wireless companies should have requested an independent verification (for example, by requiring the user to go to the wireless company’s website to confirm) before allowing such charges to go through.

    From the way that I understand how it currently work, it almost look like if I know someone’s cellular phone number, I can really cause him some trouble by subscribing him to all kind of paid text messages subscriptions.

  20. Similar to most of the unhappy clients stated above, I got charged $50 extra as third party charges on my July Fido bill.

    One was from Cliq Digital SMS Trivia, $2 per msg 1-866-257-4586 (tried calling this number only to find the number does not even exist).

    The other one was from IQ Quiz, $5/week, 1-888-846-6939.

    I managed to send ‘STOP’ txt msg to them but Fido will not reimburse me $50 and the upcoming month’s bill.

    This is clearly a so-called legitimate scam, as they may be operating this ridiculous system under the loophole of current law.

    But if wireless carriers had the slightest intention of preventing these nonsense charges on their customer’s bill, they are capable of doing so.

    For example:

    All they have to do is, if customer signs up for these stupid txt msg services which will trigger Rogers/Fido/Telus billing system, they can notify the customer right away via email/txt msg/automated voice call/mail/ etc. and ask for the client’s consent prior to sending out messages.

    And this notification should contation following information:
    1. Actual amount per txt msg or per month that will occur on wireless bill.
    2. How to unsubscribe in future if you change your mind.

    This will eliminate most of these issues and, of course, if there are people who actually want this service and willing to pay for it, they will send back a confirmation.

    Wireless carriers wouldn’t do this as they see no money doing so.

    I will have to figure out how to get my money back.

  21. Here is a question for tiredCSR – you say “but take the 2 min to reply stop and it will be over and done with”.

    Why should someone have to reply stop for a service they didn’t sign up for to begin with?

    In my brother’s case, he does not know how to send a text message (yes, it’s a real pain for the rest of our family) so for sure he didn’t follow the “double opt in” process that Rogers claims must be followed by the third parties that invoice through them. Should I have to drive 45 minutes to the ‘burbs to teach him how to text message?

    And you didn’t mention the time he required to get a refund for these charges by calling the third party and Rogers and getting the CCTS (the complaint arm of the CRTC) involved.

    This scam must be stopped at its source – i.e. Rogers, Bell, etc. If this were a rogue third party charging through Mastercard or VISA they wouldn’t last long. Mastercard or VISA would demand that they follow the rules or they would cut them off. Rogers, Bell, etc. need to do the same!

    Ann Hustis
    ahustis@hotmail.com

  22. Here is a letter that I wrote to the CRTC on July 27th, 2011. I have already exhausted the routes of: letter to the Office of the President at Rogers; and a CCTS case (the complaint arm of the CRTC).

    Dear Sirs,

    Re: Rogers Communications

    This letter is further to my letter of 9 May 2011 and your e-mailed response of 18 May 2011 at 9:46 AM regarding third party charges for third party services (e.g. Playphone and SendMe) on my cell phone. Please see copies attached.

    You advised me to contact the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Inc. (CCTS), which I did. They set up case #05010300133704 to investigate. After numerous phone calls and e-mails between CCTS/me and between CCTS/Rogers they negotiated a $185 reduction in the cancellation fee of $600. Needless to say, I was not satisfied with the outcome. However, this letter today is not about my case.

    I am writing today to ask you to investigate Rogers Communications on behalf of all Canadian cell phone customers of Rogers regarding their practices:
    1. Rogers claims that all third party companies must sign up customers using a “double opt in” process but this is clearly not being followed. Customers are being billed by third party companies through Rogers even though they have not gone through the double opt in process (nor a single opt in process for that matter).
    2. Rogers does not provide optional ways for the customer to cancel a third party service. The third party billing phone numbers that they provide on their invoice do not work; they do not offer the third party billing e-mail address.

    In my particular case, the cell phone I am referring to was used by my brother. He does not know how to text message so he certainly did not follow a double opt in process to sign up for the services. So needless to say, without a phone number to reach these third parties and with no e-mail address and no ability to send a text message to STOP the service it was very difficult to get the charges to stop. I phoned and e-mailed Rogers customer service multiple times to get them to stop the service and request refunds from these third parties. After 3 billing cycles/months I gave up and cancelled my entire cell phone service with Rogers (two cell phone numbers); hence the cancellation fees.

    I am not alone in my complaints regarding Rogers two practices above; thousands of Canadians are affected. If you Google the following text string: Rogers “third party charges” “did not sign up” you will see a very long list.

    Would you please investigate Rogers regarding the two practices above and advise me what will be done to correct the practices?

    You may contact me on my cell phone or by e-mail.

    Thank you for your attention to this matter.

    Yours truly,

    Ann Hustis
    ahustis@hotmail.com

  23. Below is the CRTC’s answer. This confirms it – no one is regulating the cell phone companies!

    I’m not sure what I’m going to do next….

    Dear Mrs. Hustis:

    This is in response to your correspondence of July 27, 2011.
    While the CRTC regulates several areas of the Canadian telecommunications industry, we do not regulate cellular companies for their rates, quality of services or business practices, including text messaging. When we receive customer complaints against such unregulated services, we suggest that the client contact the provider directly. In a telecommunications environment, which is becoming increasingly competitive, it is in the provider’s best interest to respond to your concerns.
    I am also providing you with a link to the fact sheet entitled “How to make a complaint about your telephone service” which explains the CRTC complaints process: http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/info_sht/t12.htm .

    Regards,

    Chantal Proulx
    Client Services

  24. Have any of you tried to make a claim in small claim court?
    Naming both Rogers and these scam companies as defendent.

    I am sure most of us do not really care about the money but about the fact that our government and gigantic corporatation can steal money like this.

    I remember someone said he/she contacted a class action lawyer. What happened with that?

    CS

  25. BTW, let me correct a misunderstanding. Carriers like Rogers has no incentive to protect your right. Because as far as I know, they are in for it too. They get a portion of the profit from this kind of scam. So don’t be naive believing that they care about the customer.

  26. CS – I totally agree with you. I’m sure Rogers is getting at least 40% of the take. You’re right; Rogers does not care about the customer. Their marketing department has probably weighed the revenue from these 3rd party scams against the badwill created and figured they’re still better off by participating in the scams.
    I am still considering a class action suit and am looking around for some law firms but before proceeding with a suit I’d like to exhaust the less expensive options.
    This week I’m meeting with a communications person who might do (yet another) story about this in one of the Toronto papers.
    I’ll keep this website updated….
    Regards, Ann Hustis
    ahustis@hotmail.com

  27. CSR…You are 100% wrong. We never signed up for anything or agreed to receive anything or entered any PIN number.

    Now you’re telling us you can see these PIN numbers, I challenge you to provide a copy of that in Rogers’ reply to my complaint today regarding $5 txt’s from 65-491.

    Also, Rogers should be able to provide an option for people to turn off these premium messages…why is that not offered?

    Your attitude implies we are all liars and not worthy of any help from your employer…hardly the characteristics I would expect from ‘customer service’.

    Why not try to do something to help, rather than posting countless messages about why it’s our own fault and Rogers can’t stop helping these criminals steal our money?

    People need help to stop this, not finger pointing.

  28. I just noticed that I’ve been getting ripped off over the last several months for a total of $90.
    I’m deactivating the text service and I want my money back or else I will go elsewhere along with my land line, home phone and TV service.

  29. Hello to all Rogers victims,

    Thank you all for writing to me. I’ve replied to each of you saying the following:

    “I am so sorry that this happened to you too. I’m curious, did you sign up for these third party services or not? The sign up method is to enter your cell phone number on a website and then they text you back a PIN number and then you have to either text back the PIN number to them or enter it on a website. This is what is called the “double opt in process” since there are two steps.

    My brother did NOT do this but yet his phone got signed up to the third party services. I would like to know what happened in your case.

    Be sure to start a case with the CCTS (the complaint arm of the CRTC). The Rogers Office of the President/Ombudsman won’t do anything; I tried that route. The CCTS will act on your behalf to try to get Rogers to credit your account for these charges. And of course, continue to contact the third parties to get the services to stop and to get a refund. If you’re lucky you’ll get refunded from both Rogers and the third party. That has happened to several customers who become “vocal” through the CCTS and through various websites. In other words, the more noise you make the more likely you are to get refunded. I think that Rogers is running a bit scared. They will shut down the noisemakers (that’s us) as best they can so they can continue this scam with the others.

    I have decided not to pursue a class action lawsuit since it would take so much time and money. I will however, continue to “shout out” on various websites. Social media is a powerful thing.

    If you need any more detail to what I provided above please reply and I’ll provide it. ahustis@hotmail.com

    Regards,
    Ann Hustis
    ahustis@hotmail.com

  30. All of you people are silly for just paying the charges anyway. They are charges from a third party and you never authorized them with your service provider.

    Refuse to pay, DEMAND a refund, and go to your local community legal services and talk to a lawyer.

    If they charge you interest, just disregard it. It’s interest on fees they weren’t legally allowed to charge you in the first place.

    If they try to tell you you are responsible for the charges, ask them to show you the exact form with your signature that allows unauthorized charges from third parties. They won’t have one.

    DO NOT pay just so you don’t have to deal with it. They rob us enough as it is.

  31. I saw my bill of Rogers phone, it surprised me. I got several text messages and I have to pay $96.

    I call to Rogers, they say to me you have to pay, we don’t do anything wrong, it is your responsibility. How can I do it? Canada’s law must be changed. No more victim of telecom company. Why we do not move next step, we know our right.

  32. I just got my bill from Rogers today, and there was a charge for $80 for “premium text messages” from 746-56.

    I immediately called Rogers and spent 2 hours arguing with an agent. He finally put me through to his manager, who continued to refuse to refund the charge for another hour.

    After I repeatedly threatened to cancel the contract, complain to the CCTS, reach out to newspapers and TV/radio stations, and reverse the charge by contacting Visa, she finally decided to give in and credit my $65 – even though she had claimed that it was impossible for her to do it.

    The point is, don’t give up. It’s not fun, but if you stick to your guns, they will give in.

  33. Hello everyone. A consumer reporter from a large Canadian network is going to interview me within the next few weeks about my experience with Rogers charging me for “third party charges” that I didn’t sign up for.

    The names of these third parties were SendMe and PlayPhone.

    If you are interested in sharing your story either on-the-air or just for background information, please e-mail me at: ahustis@hotmail.com.

    I would like to know the NAME of the third party service and WHAT SERVICE they were supposedly providing (e.g. ring tones, wallpaper, etc.). Thank you.

  34. To all you CSR’s not taking responsibility. The phone company’s could easily block these companies and should. You are enabling these crimes companies and trying to wash your hands of an obvious ripoff.

    You are forgetting who is paying your bills – your customers. PUT THEM FIRST.

    To the victim’s. Call your phone company and raise hell. I have had every penny refunded. Another solution is to change your phone number.

  35. I just received the most heart wrenching email from a woman who was billed $1,500 in September by Rogers for Third Party text messages from Mobivate.

    She did not sign up for any service from this company. She has no idea what to do and is scared and despondent.

    I sent her a reply advising her to contact the CCTS and I’ll follow up with her on Friday to see how she’s coming along.

    I don’t know this woman but judging from her email I think she’s a recent immigrant. Imagine Rogers doing this to her! I’m sick to my stomach.

  36. We are a Bell subscriber. We have these charges as well, Code 78865.

    I have not responded to a code, my cell number or any of the accused above. 37$ last month and 63$ this month.

    I am continuing to complain…

  37. Everyone – Fight back against 3rd party charges on your Rogers bill by establishing a case with the CCTS!

    I’m receiving on average of 2 emails per week from people who have had success. Here is one I just received tonight:

    Hi Ann,
    This is just a follow up to my case. I talked to 2 Roger reps and 2 Third party service Reps and did not get anywhere.

    I emailed the president’s office, which gave no answer. I took your advice and filed an online complaint with CCTS on Sat. night of Oct. 22, 2011.

    The result came very quickly. Today, Oct. 24, I got a call from a Rogers rep offering a full refund for the charge, but they did not admit any mistake.

    Anyway, I took the offer and got an email confirming the credit. Thank you very much for your advice. Without it, I don’t think I would ever get the refund.

  38. Biggest scam ever. Somehow I fell into a subscription with Motime (still not sure how). A month later I start getting texts to which I reply “STOP” & “TXTSTOP@QUIT”. Somehow doesn’t register on their system. 5 months later and two telephone calls to QUIT SUBSCRIPTION I finally manage to get rid of them. Well, I think I have. Let’s see what my next bill looks like. Bell Mobility has been great at refunding. I think my customer service agent called it a ‘legal scam’. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

  39. Bell Mobility quickly gave me a credit for the $20 Jamster scammed me.

    I have not read all the posts in this thread, but I sure hope that everyone who has a complaint contacts the CRTC about this company. They need to clean up their act.

  40. Same thing with my mother’s cellphone. She is on \Pay as you go\ with Rogers, and had lost around $180ish last week to a company called \Djugo Zemgo\.

    She had around $250+ unused amount in Rogers’ account,and when she checked her balance one day and was told she only had $90 left. Rogers is not doing anything, and Zemgo is not picking up the phone.

    She never use text message, so there is no way for her to subscribe with the cell phone.

    So.. Does this mean in theory ANYONE who knows our cellphone number (or make one up at random) can subscribe, and the other party (cellphone holder) will have to suffer the charges???

  41. Beware of this company: I have been gouged by a company called Skill2Thrill trivia (Cliq Digital).

    On Sep 14, 2011, a sign popped up while I was on the Internet asking me to enter the phone number for a chance to win something. I was not aware of seeing any fine print telling me about the terms and any cost to play the game.

    Right away, the messages started to come on my cell. I never answered any of their messages, believing that if I play (meaning if I answer), there might be some charges. And if I don’t, there won’t be.

    Five days later on Sepy. 19, I called their toll free number 1-866-257-4586 just because I was fed up with those messages. When the recording said “to unsubscribe” press 1, I did.

    I stopped getting the messages but I got charged on my bills, 8 messages for the first month at $3 apiece for total of $24, and 6 messages in the next bill for $18. The company claims that I did not unsubscribe until Oct. 4.

    I sent the e-mail messages and I talked to the company manager (or at least she claimed that she was the manager of the company), Martha Tucax. She told me the company’s name was Mobile Generation, located at 119 Spadina Ave. in Toronto.

    They will not reverse the charges and Rogers, my provider, told me that it is not their problem.

    Such a ripoff, which is continued to go on and on. This company should be closed down forever.

    Does anybody know about how I can get refund of $42? Who should I file a complaint with?

  42. Beware of this company – Mobirok. They have a web site. I checked it out and they have a premium SMS product.

    I bought a cell phone for my brother who is on disability. He had free Facebook on the phone. To enter a Facebook contest he had to enter his phone number and a pin. Sound familiar.

    I just got the bill and it is for $336.00 before taxes. He sent and received 168 messages. He said he was sms ing with a woman in Maple Ridge. He was not advised of a charge or he would not have done it.

    Since the account is in my name I am stuck with a huge bill. My brother is a sucker for a scam. He never ceases to amaze me. This company is a scam. This service is a scam. There should be a class action lawsuit to stop these thieves.

  43. Hello Kuldip, you should immediately establish a case with the CCTS:

    Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Services (CCTS)
    P.O. Box 81088
    Ottawa, ON K1P 1B1
    response@ccts-cprst.ca

    The CCTS will fight your cell phone company on your behalf, to get the charges to stop AND to get a refund for you.

    There is no sense in fighting with the 3rd parties because their phone numbers are out of service or they just don’t answer them.

    Rogers and the other cell phone companies are willing part of this scam. It’s disgusting!

    If you have any questions please feel free to email me, ahustis@hotmail.com.

  44. I declare that helping everyone with getting refunds for these 3rd party charges has become a second full-time job for me….and I’m LOVING it! I couldn’t be more energized. So keep those questions coming!

    A lady in Edmonton contacted me in early November about $1,500 in 3rd party charges on her cell phone. I advised her to establish a case with the CCTS, which she did.

    Nevertheless Rogers called her and threatened to cut off her cell phone the next day. She called me in a panic.

    I told her to tell Rogers that since there was an open case with the CCTS and her account was under dispute, she did not have to pay the bill until the CCTS case was resolved.

    So she hung tight.

    Here is the e-mail I received from her 2 days ago:

    Dear Ann,

    Thank you very much! Rogers has refunded me all for my third party charges.
    Appreciate very much your support. I would not have done it without your help.
    ————————————————————————–

    THIS kind of feedback keeps me energized! We must fight back against Rogers and the other cell phone companies who participate in 3rd party scams!

    Ann Hustis

  45. I received my Rogers bill and a $13 charge for motime subscription/DL fee was added.

    I contacted Rogers 3 times and motime call centre in africa and india and guess what? No resolution and Rogers refused to reverse the charge.

    I am 100% sure that I did not subscribe to the scam or even know what is motime.

    I will open a case with the ccts and hopefully get a refund. Thanks, Ann, for the advice.

    We should all refuse to pay the charges and go to small claims court, but a class action lawsuit will probably stop these scams forever. Otherwise, new victims will appear everyday.

    Shame on ROGERS, BELL AND TELUS. They are partners with these scammers and should by sued and charged.

    Does anybody know a good lawyer for a class action lawsuit? Has anybody approached their MP?

  46. The same thing happened to my daughter, except she was ELEVEN YEARS OLD. Over two months, our cell phone bill had an extra $218 in charges.

    She did not enter any PIN on her phone and I have been trying to get the company (R&D Media) to refund my money.

    Initially, they said they would refund $120, but I demanded the full amount and they have since stopped answering my correspondence.

    Rogers is my carrier and so far have been useless in helping me.

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