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Special content sponsored by IDA
"Guaranteed chance to win a brand new smartphone!"
"Play to win $888 cash and many more prizes!"
"Enjoy unlimited music and game downloads!"
Have you ever come across SMS or online invitations, such as the ones above, to participate in games/quizzes that sometimes promise you a chance to win attractive prizes? The services offered in these invitations are called Premium Rate Services (PRS). PRS refer to services that are sent to your mobile phone, usually via SMS messages, but cost more than your typical SMS messages.  The charges may be applied on a subscription basis
(e.g. weekly or monthly) or for each SMS sent or received by you. Some examples are news alerts, quiz games, music download services etc.

What are some ways that PRS can reach you?

You may encounter invitations to subscribe to PRS via the following channels:
 
  • the Internet
  •  
  • after downloading a free application which requires you to consent
    to receiving advertisements and/or commercials 'pushed' directly on
    your handphone
  •  
  • TV commercial
  •  
  • print advertisements
  •  
If you receive an invitation to subscribe to PRS, you should be alert and read the charges and terms and conditions carefully before subscribing to or participating in these services.
 
What do you need to know if you are NOT interested in participating in or signing up for PRS ?
If you receive the invitations for PRS and are not interested in them, you can simply delete or ignore those SMS invitations. Further, if you wish to protect yourself from unknowingly subscribing to any PRS, you may wish to opt for the PRS barring service provided by your mobile operators. To find out more about the PRS barring service, including how to activate this service, please contact your mobile operator for more information. More details on this service can also be found on the mobile operators' websites.
"I've been charged for a PRS that I did not participate in or sign up for! What should I do?"
Today, the charges for PRS are mainly billed and collected by the mobile operators on behalf of the PRS providers. If you have been charged for any PRS you did not participate in or sign up for, you should contact your mobile operator immediately. Under the PRS Code, mobile operators are required to assist users to help resolve any dispute on PRS bills. In the meantime, you are to continue to pay your monthly telecom service subscription charges. You should also contact the PRS provider to clarify on the charges.
Bamboozled by Premium Rate Services? Share your past experiences and learn how to handle these situations, here!