The UK’s premium rate services regulator ICSTIS has fined Moby Monkey $76,000 for its “Mystery Award” SMS spam operation. In addition to the fine, access to the service has been barred after the company was found to have committed serious breaches of the ICSTIS’ code of practice.
The premium rate service attracted over 200 complaints from mobile users, which prompted the regulator to investigate. The service was found to be seriously misleading and promoted inappropriately, with children receiving the message and some users being repeatedly targeted.
The fine is a warning to the premium rate industry and SMS spammers that misleading consumers is unacceptable. The regulator also stated that promotions which breach the code of conduct are likely to be barred immediately and the company heavily fined.