SMS Charges Example

sending a SMS to a 19 number
sending a SMS to a Premium number

SMS charges

What happened? – Details and Explanation:

In the event that you have not done so yet, we strongly advise that you contact your phone provider and request that ‘Premium Services’ are blocked. This will avoid any further charges from such sources.

In order to activate SMS charges for a content service, you (or someone using your phone) must reply “OK” by sending a text message (SMS) as a response to the initial free message that was sent to your phone.


In the majority of cases the phone number was submitted on an online (internet) based marketing campaign, for instance: ”Win a gift card“, “take this survey” etc. You could come across this while surfing on your home computer, surfing on your phone or receiving an email that invites you to play.


On the marketing page where you fill in your phone number, the T&C’s and the costs to participate in the campaign must be clearly stated.

After a systems register the phone number, a free SMS message is sent out to the entered phone number. In this message you are asked to SMS back “OK” in order to participate and to confirm that the entry made online was in fact made by you (or came from your phone).

This ‘double opt-in’ mechanism prevents someone subscribing a random phone number to a service without that phone owner’s knowledge. Again, in this free SMS message, the costs, how to opt-out and the game’s helpline details must be clearly stated.

When the you send in the “OK” SMS reply, you will receive a subscription confirmation SMS detailing the sms charges (costs), how to opt-out and the helpline number. At this stage the quiz or trivia game starts.

The “OK” SMS message that is sent from your phone, is then independently registered by your carrier (e.g. Vodafone), the SMS gateway provider (normally a specialised SMS aggregator) and the service provider’s systems.

Please note: The ‘OK’ message can only originate from your mobile phone. You have to go to the SMS text editor, type the word “OK” and press the ‘send’ button on the phone.

By no other means can you be subscribed to these games.

Example: The Quiz/Trivia Game:

The first question may look like this:

$Msg: 1st Q: The Cha Cha Cha is a what? A. Dance B. Dog, Reply A or B NOW! Player with most points wins! Help? {help line number}.

“$Msg” stands for the local indication that this is a paid message -indicating that it is not a normal SMS.

In order to answer, the user must reply “A”, by sending an SMS containing the letter “A” and pressing the send button.

Please Note: Because many of these services are subscription services, you will be charged for receiving this question. Because of the subscription, you receive a message every so often (eg 3x per week or 4x per month).

Beware! Deleting an SMS after receiving a question will not stop further or existing costs. Compare it with your Pay TV (eg Foxtel or Canal+): not turning on your TV or even selling your TV will NOT end your Pay TV subscription. You have to contact the Pay TV in order to end your subscription.

After registering the first response, the next question will be sent:

$Msg: CORRECT! Score:936.Next Q:How many colours in a rainbow? A.2 B.7? Reply A or B! {entity name} Help? {help line number} (“$cost” if u answer). (entity name)

This message states “$cost if u answer” meaning if you answer, the next paid message will be sent! Call the helpline number if you are unsure or have questions. 

Every time you reach a certain accumulated spend, a courtesy message stating “You have spent ‘amount’” will be sent to your phone. This message, again, must include the opt-out instructions, helpline number and the weekly price for this active subscription.