I am pretty good at avoiding scams and spam.

I set up a spam filter on my e-mails and nearly all the crap gets filtered out. The stupid telephone calls of “your e-mail is compromised”, “you owe income tax” etc just get ignored. No, I wasn’t mis-sold PPI, thanks.

But I got one the other day that could not have been avoided:

On my cellphone/mobile I got a message offering some kind of promotion. I ignored it, just deleted it and thought no more about it.

Until I looked at my bill, and saw it had cost me £4. For an SMS message I didn’t want, hadn’t asked for. And, it appeared, there was nothing I could do.

I contacted my mobile company (O2), who apparently get a share of the charge. “Can’t help you get your money back” they said. Someone on a forum said that O2 could block premium services, but they said they couldn’t.

I was pointed to a page that said send “STOP” to a certain SMS number and it would stop. But even that cost another £1 nearly. There was also a phone number to ring. I rang, but that cost too. I again stopped the service, but no-one could help me get my money back.

I felt like chalking it up to experience, but I never asked for it, never wanted it, avoid these type of things always.

Hope you don’t get caught…

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