THE NATIONAL Telecommunications Commission (NTC) said it has summoned Globe Telecom and its mobile content provider over reports and complaints by its subscribers that their “prepaid phone credit” has vanished even if they are not using their mobile phones.
The NTC ordered Globe to suspend the implementation of its content service provider agreement with Gotdeals Mobile Inc. pending an investigation into the reports and complaints. One woman, Feanne Mauricio, also filed a similar complaint with the NTC which prompted it to summon the giant telecom company.
The NTC said that it is eyeing to impose stricter penalties against those behind the vanishing prepaid phone credit.
During a recent Senate hearing on the issue, NTC Deputy Commissioner Edgar Cabarios admitted there are erring value-added service (VAS) providers that eat up a certain amount of prepaid load or credit without notifying the mobile phone user.
According to Cabarios, VAS groups’ other telecommunication services beyond standard voice calls and text messaging are considered as spam messages. A consumer should not receive messages if not registered with the VAS providers. The NTC can suspend the registration of the VAS providers.
Senator Paolo Benigno Aquino IV, head of the Senate Committee on Science and Technology, urged telecom companies to immediately institute clear-cut policies to solve the problem of unwarranted deductions on prepaid mobile loads. He proposed that telecom firms issue notifications to their subscribers whenever a load is added or deducted from their prepaid accounts.
Based on NTC figures, about 97% or 126 million of the country’s 130 million mobile phone owners are prepaid subscribers. (Aerol John Pateña)
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