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Standard User mixt
(experienced) Sat 26-May-12 13:46:58
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Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


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I have two numbers: an o2 PAYG number (which I rarely use) and my Orange contract number.

I just received a standard SPAM text on my Orange number about half an hour ago. The end of which says "text END" to stop the text (the usual splurge).

The text comes from a valid UK mobile phone number. So I thought I would try calling them back. So I did, within 3 minutes of receiving the text. It rang for about 6 times, before going to a Vodafone answer service. So I hung up.

I then called back again, and it went directly to the Vodafone answer service. Evidently, they do not wish to speak to me.

This kind of **** really annoys me. I called Orange customer care who have advised me that the only way I can deal with repeated SPAM texts from the same number is:

1) Change my number (not something I want to do just yet)
2) Go into an Orange store, give them the number of the spammer, and have them block it.
3) Download an App which will block it at phone level. Turns out, there is no such app/blocking mechanism for an iPhone, only for Android (my contract is already over, so maybe I should look at moving to an Android phone?)

How do other people deal with these texts? Is there some regulatory body I can speak with or report such numbers to?

Also, I suspect if you have lower level access to an SMS gateway, you can actually make any text sent appear to come from any number you wish (right?) - which means this text may not have even originated from the mobile number it appears to have come from.

Thanks in advance for any help/advice on this matter.

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Standard User IanBB
(regular) Sat 26-May-12 15:22:05
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: mixt] [link to this post]
 
Personally, I just ignore them.
Standard User mixt
(experienced) Sat 26-May-12 15:43:26
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: IanBB] [link to this post]
 
Fair enough.

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Standard User uno
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 26-May-12 16:31:15
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: mixt] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by mixt:
Also, I suspect if you have lower level access to an SMS gateway, you can actually make any text sent appear to come from any number you wish (right?) - which means this text may not have even originated from the mobile number it appears to have come from.


Correct.

Ignoring them is really the only way to deal with them. Texting or calling the numbers back is generally (one way) how they confirm the number is "used" and will then continue to send you rubbish.

It's possible to also check the status of a text from the SMSC it was sent via, to see if it was delivered to handset or failed.

Some networks can block numbers at that level, others cannot. Changing the number may help but sooner or later, you'll get them again.

Matt

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Standard User mixt
(experienced) Sat 26-May-12 17:03:17
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: uno] [link to this post]
 
Ok then. So this leads nicely onto another question.

Does Android, or any available app for Android, have a mechanism for dealing with spam texts? Like, for example, maybe I don't want to be alerted (phone vibration / screen message) when I receive a spam text. I'd rather it silently get put into a "low priority / deal with it later" msg folder.

Gmail has the ability for you to filter email on particular words, and classify it with labels etc (it also has an entire underlying platform for identifying spam email, but I doubt there is anything that complex for SMS messages yet). Is there any such filtering mechanism available on Android phones, where custom rules can be setup to filter SMS messages into particular folders based on keywords present in the message? And also to customise alerting for such SMS messages?

Sure, I can ignore them. But they are invasive and intrusive. It would be so much nicer if they could be dealt with with the same disregard as the spammer.

PS - Even something as simple as, if the number of the text has come from is recognised contact in the phone's address book, allow normal alerting. If it's not recognised, don't alert or vibrate. This would solve the problem entirely.

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Edited by mixt (Sat 26-May-12 17:05:41)

Standard User uno
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 26-May-12 17:05:42
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: mixt] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by mixt:
Sure, I can ignore them. But they are invasive and intrusive. It would be so much nicer if they could be dealt with with the same disregard as the spammer.


The problem as you say, *you* have no way of knowing if the originator number is the real source. Like spam, that can be set to anything, (or any number or text string).

If it is a real mobile number, it could simply have been loaded in to a SIM bank and used for bulk sending. Many networks don't require you to register a SIM on PAYG before it works. I believe Orange are still the only network that only enable a SIM once registered.

Matt

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Standard User mixt
(experienced) Sat 26-May-12 17:07:10
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: uno] [link to this post]
 
See my PS message that I added to my post:

PS - Even something as simple as, if the number of the text has come from is recognised contact in the phone's address book, allow normal alerting. If it's not recognised, don't alert or vibrate. This would solve the problem entirely.


Can Android do this?

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Standard User uno
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 26-May-12 17:08:18
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: mixt] [link to this post]
 
No idea.. i'm in the Apple house, not Google wink

A quick Google search gave this:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mr...

No idea how good but seems to get good reviews.

Matt

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Standard User b4dger
(knowledge is power) Sat 26-May-12 17:08:57
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: mixt] [link to this post]
 
I was going to suggest looking for an app until I read that it wasn't an Android phone! wink Are you sure there aren't any for an iPhone?

Does the iPhone have an option to send a particular number straight to 'voice mail'?
Android has this option and it works well stopping nuisance calls from bothering you... EDIT (Ah this is for Texts! Back to looking for an app!)

Edited by b4dger (Sat 26-May-12 17:10:10)

Standard User mixt
(experienced) Sat 26-May-12 17:10:42
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Re: Dealing with SPAM text messages to mobile


[re: uno] [link to this post]
 
Nice, I shall take a look. Might swade me to move to Andriod then. The whole tethering thing with iPhone is a complete joke - Orange charge extra if you tether the device. Andriods do not suffer this problem.

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