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Fraudulent activation of service and intimation by SMS from 54300

I am IDEA Maharashtra circle post paid sim customer. Yesterday I received a message from sender “54300” at 0700 saying that I was subscribed to a service which I got nothing to do. The message is “Hi! We have received & are processing your request for service How to videos. Just sit back & relax, you will receive a confirmation within 2 hours.”. And almost immediately on the same time stamp another message that reads “Hello! Your How to videos is activated. Amount charged is Rs 49.00 /- for 1Week. Renewal charge is Rs [email protected] To deactivate, SMS STOP to 155223. Set your favorite Song as Callertune, click bit.ly/Songct .For more songs, dial 1234 (Tollfree). PLAY cricket contests & WIN Rs100 COUPON.Click bit.ly/3l7an2Z”

I checked my Vi App to see if there was any charge but there wasnt. Then i checked my plan and saw active packs and services and within that sure enough there was “How to Videos”..

I searched on the net and saw several people having a similar experience from the same number. I proceeded to calling VI customer care and, as exactly described in this forum by another such victim, the customer care person attributed it to my clicking some link and that they are from a third-party. He assured me that he has deactivated the service and that any charge would be revoked. I told him that i still want to register a complaint saying that many have already had this experience and if this is not resolved i will approach consumer court. He kept acknowledging and even gave me a complaint number which i think is again fraudulent since i neither see this in the service history of my app or an SMS which Vi sends when a complaint is registered. In fact, the SMS comes even before i hang up…but this time even 10 min hence there is no SMS nor an entry in the Vi app.

How can they charge for a service which i apparently clicked, mostly inadvertently, if at all, without even cross verifying if i want to subscribe? Everything else is double checked and cross verified otherwise. How strange that so many of us are apparently “subscribing” to this service amd then complaining about it? Cant we all see this is a scam to catch gullibles? I have had this experience many years ago with IDEA when this tactic was rampant..it fell out but seems to have made a comeback..

Interestingly, Vi does not share the name of the third party sending these SMS but somehow they get added in your Vi plan as an active pack… There is no question that Vodafone-Idea is involved in this fraud and daylight robbery. I am not sure how to bring this to notice to the ombudsman for companies and serve a notice and penalize for such shameful behaviour. And to educate the larger public of this fraud amd to make them more aware.

It had taken a good 2 hours of my time to resolve this and pen this note like so many other people have done..what a collective waste of time and energy.

While i am typing this out, i get another message from the same number, indicating that my pack has been deactivated as per my request. How is Vi not involved!!!??? This is modern digital robbery

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