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3G Card Spam


Got my MTN HSDPA card the other day. Very nifty gadget. But imagine my surprise, when this brand new unit, with a brand new cellphone number and SIM card - got a message today.

Name:
Number: +2783775800009400
Content:
CONGRATULATIONS you have won an INFLATABLE BED from HOMEMARK. Call 0114306000 with ref no :2003.Prizes excl P&P.T&C apply.Reply NO 2b removed.
Time: 27/08/2008 10:44:18


Release the hounds! What the hell is this!? I have NOT given this number to anyone. I don't even know what this number is... Yet the spam starts.

My theories, and none of them are pretty:

1. MTN sells their subscriber database.
2. HomeMark Spammers are guessing cell number combinations (not a completely whack idea considering our 40 million odd combinations in this company).

If I get time to track this down, I'll update the post. I would be extremely disappointed if MTN was selling their subscriber database.

Any thoughts?

Comments

  1. Option 3 - They are recyling numbers?

    ReplyDelete
  2. i'm with rob.
    i've had this problem on mtn and vodacom in the past...

    ReplyDelete
  3. @rob @hilton Very interesting... good spot. But surely this raises privacy concerns!? I could be getting unsolicited calls, unsolicited emails... What if my phone was one of the millions of pay-as-you-go crime comms phones? Yikes.

    You would think, that buying a service, you get a clean privacy slate...

    ReplyDelete
  4. You would think, but you would be wrong. Privacy is no longer a right, it's a luxury that few of us cherish, but only in certain parts of our lives.

    Sucks. But true. Bastards.

    ReplyDelete
  5. My theory is “this is now our lives” you can run but you can’t hide. I would be interested to hear what the legal standing is; if is was proved MTN are selling their d/base?

    Have you read the Ben Elton book which looks at the extreme future of what social networking does to us?

    ReplyDelete
  6. UPDATE: Have emailed MTN using their website. About 4 to 5 days ago. No answer.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Here's a list of spam received to date:

    Name:
    Number: +2783775800009400
    Content:
    CONGRATULATIONS you have won an INFLATABLE BED from HOMEMARK. Call 0114306000 with ref no :2003.Prizes excl P&P.T&C apply.Reply NO 2b removed.
    Time: 29/08/2008 16:44:31


    Name:
    Number: +2783390673150577
    Content:
    fname,Boogaloos SHOE SAMPLE SALE,starts this weekend! EXCLUSIVE styles From R299 a pair! All stores. Unique to the Individual. Limited sizing! HURRY! Dyl
    Time: 29/08/2008 10:23:42


    Name:
    Number: +2783775800009400
    Content:
    CONGRATULATIONS you have won an INFLATABLE BED from HOMEMARK. Call 0114306000 with ref no :2003.Prizes excl P&P.T&C apply.Reply NO 2b removed.
    Time: 27/08/2008 10:44:18

    ----

    Yes, 2 inflatable beds from HomeMark. DAMN THEM.

    Tell me - what if this was a real cellphone? What if this was my personal cellphone - and because of number recycling, I kept getting these irritating spam sms'es? Damn MTN.

    Is there an option where you can request a previously unused number?

    Still no word from MTN on a comment to this situation.

    ReplyDelete
  8. UPDATE: Still no word from MTN. Very sad. But hey, who care's about the bloggers really.

    Hope they realise, you search for "MTN Spam" on Google.com, world search, this article is 8th. Front page.

    The internet never forgets.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Vodacom customers have the same Problem. How about this one.

    Note the “Reply NO 2b removed.” Option, What if they charge you R1 per SMS to be removed?

    Man . . that would make them rich!!!

    ReplyDelete

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