" ITREALMS: Celtel rejects fraudulent SMS promo

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Saturday, May 12, 2007

Celtel rejects fraudulent SMS promo

THE era of fraudulent Short Messaging Service (SMS) promo may have returned, but the good news is that telecommunications operators are quick in rejecting such exercise, especially it does not originate from the purported telcos, and such was the faith of Celtel Nigeria at the weekend.

Penultimate Wednesday, an SMS was making rounds requesting recipients to extend the same gesture to five other persons, especially subscribers of Celtel Nigeria and they would stand the chance of getting free credit worth N500.

And it read thus, “Celtel is celebrating her 5th anniversary today, send this to 5 people and get 500 naira credit, it is free.”

Celtel Nigeria, however, denied that such a promo is on-going and cautioned that SMS messages emanating from the telco usually have as the sender reading “Celtel,” which makes it easier to distinguish real SMS from the operator and fraudulent ones.

According to Public Relations Specialist at Celtel Nigeria, Mr. Emmanuel Otokhine, Celtel is not running any SMS promo and such a message as stated above does not originate from the telco.

“No. Celtel is usually written on top of every mail from Celtel,” he told Champion Infotel.

The unfortunate thing about this fraudulent SMS promo, though, is that even the so-called learned people still indulge in adhering to this kind of activities, who from all intents and purposes should be able to read below the lines of the SMS.

Take for instance, Celtel Nigeria has not even celebrated its one-year in the country let alone commemorating the fifth year.

Secondly, why should Celtel that offers some free SMS to all its subscribers now introduce a promo for just SMS, which ordinarily does not make sense, because what is on offer currently is over five SMS each month per subscriber.

Also worrisome is that why should somebody ask another, especially supposed close pals such as family members to originate such a message in the first place.

Industry watchers, therefore call on telcos in the country, mostly the Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) operators and the regulator, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to find a way of solving this bad image before it gets out of hand. A stitch in time, saves nine.

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