Unexpected Mobile Phone Charges


Since March 2012, The Fair Trading Commission (FTC) has been receiving complaints from a number of consumers of prepaid mobile phone services in relation to unexpected charges to their credit balance. Specifically, consumers complain that they discover that their credit balance has been depleted; and when they contact their mobile service providers, they are told that the charges are in relation to browsing the Internet.These consumers contend that they did not browse the Internet at the time they were charged for using it.

The FTC takes this opportunity to advise consumers of prepaid mobile phone services that mobile phones with Internet capabilities will connect to the Internet automatically so long as the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) feature in enabled. As such, downloaded applications such as Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Screen Muncher, Photo Studio, BeBuzz and some Instant Messaging applications, will update automatically, if so configured, once the WAP feature is enabled. Consequently, the phones may automatically connect to the Internet and applications upgraded without the users’ knowledge and therefore users may incur unexpected charges.

For information on the FTC please visit our website at http://www.jftc.gov.jm
CONTACT: David Miller, Executive Director
FAIR TRADING COMMISSION
52 Grenada Crescent
Kingston 5.
Tel: (876) 960-0120-4
Fax: (876) 960-0763
Email: ftc@cwjamaica.com