'Fake' scam text messages warn against rip-offs

Why the Office of Fair Trading is having people on…

Why the Office of Fair Trading is having people on…

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is sending out fake scam SMS messages to young people to help raise awareness around text scams.

People aged between 18 and 24 receive a text reading: "Urgent! U may have won £1k cash with '2 Good 2 B True'."

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This first text is then followed by a more detailed message explaining that the first message was a fake and that the OFT sent it to warn about mobile phone text scams.

The OFT has targeted young people as it estimates six per cent of all victims of mass-marketed scams each year are aged between 15 and 24.

Mike Haley, director of consumer protection at the OFT, said the organisation hopes the fake scam texts will remind young people to be on their guard if they encounter dubious offers similar to this.

The second message also lets people know about a free text message service called SMSus that allows you to text the details of a premium rate number and receive information on the cost to call it, details of the service provider and how to register a complaint.

The service has been set up by PhonepayPlus (formerly Icstis), the organisation that regulates phone-paid services.