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Unsolicited SMS: NCC Gives Telcos Final Warning


By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Telecommunications operators in Nigeria involved in sending unsolicited short text messages (SMS) to subscribers have been given final a warning by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the regulatory agency in the country, to stop this.

The NCC said it was worried that telcos in the country were yet to stop sending these ‘annoying’ messages to customers despite being notified to desist from it.

NCC had directed GSM providers in the country to activate the 2442 Do-Not-Disturb short code from July 1, 2016, but there have been complaints from subscribers that they still receive unsolicited messages from their operators after requesting to stop getting them.

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A statement issued by NCC Director of Public Affairs, Mr Tony Ojobo, said the agency was ready to protect subscribers from the nuisance and irritations of unsolicited text messages and calls from mobile network operators.

Mr Ojobo said, “Industry compliance doesn’t seem to have matched the seriousness of the direction thus, compelling the Commission to issue a final warning to the operators.

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“The direction takes into cognizance the broad range of services, which include: Banking/Insurance/Financial products, Real estate, Education, Health, Consumer Goods and Automobiles, Communication/ Broadcasting/ Entertainment/ IT, Tourism and /Leisure, Sports, Religion (Christianity, Islam, others), and directed the operators to give the necessary instructions and clarifications that will enable subscribers subscribe to a particular service/services/none at all.

“In fact, a Full DND which is SMS “STOP” to 2442 does not allow the subscriber to receive any unsolicited message from the operators at all.”

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He called on telcos to immediately comply with the direction, warning that further complaints from subscribers would not be taken lightly by the NCC.

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Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan.

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