Wednesday, 28 January 2015

KKO is not OK !

I've been using a new Nokia 930 Windows 8.1 phone for a month or so now.  No problems with the phone, it does all that I need it to do, albeit the Windows store is a bit light-on for useful apps.  For example, there are about 10 apps on my old Samsung S2 Android phone that I still use regularly (banking, etrade, Fire Ready from the CFA) that simply don't exist for Windows.

But that's not a real problem, nor was it unexpected when I signed up for the Nokia.

What was unexpected is the totally unforgiveable and outrageous scam that Telstra actively facilitates from a outfit of debateable business morals called KKO Store.

Specifically, you only have to accidentally click on an ad or banner within one of your downloaded (totally legal, and endorsed by Microsoft) Windows apps, to then receive a text like the one below:

Now, normally you'd just ignore this type of spamming and delete it.  BUT ... if you do that, what then happens is that Telstra kindly adds $9.99 to your phone bill every week in perpetuity, because what you should have done is reply to the above text with the word 'STOP'.

And when you contact Telstra to complain, their response is 'sorry, nothing to do with us, we're just passing on the costs, you'll have to take it up with KKO' and 'your phone seller should have warned you about Premium SMS' (they didn't ... and it was a Telstra Shop!).

As I said, outrageous.  The direct  parallel is if I were to contact you, and tell you that I am going to take $10 out of your bank account every week (because your bank has said they are happy to comply and cooperate with me), unless you specifically tell me not to.

Where is the ACCC on this?  Where is the TIO?  Nowhere to be seen, so far as I can tell.

There have been countless people caught by this scam, from relatively knowledgeable business people (like myself) through to little old grannies (like my mum).

Telstra, you've gone down in my estimation .... on the basis of this experience, I'd give you a 4 or lower on the NPS scale.  

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