ICO and UK mobile operators unite to fight spam text | DMA

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ICO and UK mobile operators unite to fight spam text

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Spam texts from rogue companies continue to annoy and distress millions of people so the news today that the major UK mobile operators are working with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to share real-time information about spam attacks is good news for consumers and all responsible mobile marketers.

For the first time, the ICO will receive real-time information about spam attacks from EE, O2, Three and Vodafone to help the regulator quickly identify breaches of the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR) and issue monetary penalties.

The piece of software that allows them to identify spam texts, the GSMA Spam Reporting Service (SRS), has been around for a while but this new cooperation will enable networks and the regulator to share intelligence in real time to catch the perpetrators and ensure that an attack on one network can be isolated and prevented on others.

For those of you unfamiliar with how SRS works, mobile phone users are able to report spam text messages by forwarding it to their mobile operator using a free short code: ’7726′ or ‘SPAM’. Mobile operators can then use this insight to block senders of spam.

I’m also encouraged to hear that EE, O2, Three, Vodafone and the ICO are looking at ways to extend their use of SRS to address nuisance calls. Working with the regulator to tackle the activities of rogue companies that operate outside of the law will protect responsible marketers who always put the customer first in everything they do.

By Mike Lordan, Chief of Operations, DMA

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