Mobile phone scam

Chat and items of interest about Crete and Greece.
bobscott
Posts: 2691
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Mobile phone scam

Postby bobscott » Fri Jan 10, 2020 9:04 pm

Have just discovered (OK, so I'm lazy!) that with a pay as you go mobile phone where COSMOTE is the provider, that when they top up from a phone card, they tell you that you will get 350 minutes of free phone calls and 50 texts, but they don't explain that they will charge you €8 for the privilege,and what's more, deduct that 8 euros from the amount you have just paid to top up the account. AND, although the top-up lasts for 2 months, the alleged free phone calls and texts have to be taken up in the first month otherwise you lose them!

We rarely use our mobile (being old-fashioned) and resent being compelled to pay €8 for a month's worth of free calls and texts when we don't use them. This is a scam and seems on the face of it to be an illegal charge.

Does anyone out there know more about this and specifically how to circumvent the theft of €8 from our top-up payment? I think Vodaphone has the same system, but believe they offer you the option of declining the offer. Not so COSMOTE.

Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

Kilkis
Posts: 11721
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby Kilkis » Fri Jan 10, 2020 11:38 pm

Are you sure you cannot stop this deduction? Normally these are bundles that you activate at some point. Once activated then the bundle will be applied every time you top up. It is usually possible to deactivate the bundle. Do you have an online account that you log into in order to top up? If so there should be somewhere to deactivate the bundle. If you don't have an online account then create one.

I use Vodafone and do make use of these bundles but only when and if I want to. I would be amazed if Cosmote didn't operate in the same way. Because of the high cost per minute charged on pre-pay phones and the way they are applied, i.e. a minimum amount of time charged for each call even if it is only a few seconds, I have often found it better to use the bundle even though I am an extremely light user.

Warwick

bobscott
Posts: 2691
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby bobscott » Sat Jan 11, 2020 10:17 am

Kilkis wrote:Are you sure you cannot stop this deduction? Normally these are bundles that you activate at some point. Once activated then the bundle will be applied every time you top up. It is usually possible to deactivate the bundle. Do you have an online account that you log into in order to top up? If so there should be somewhere to deactivate the bundle. If you don't have an online account then create one.

I use Vodafone and do make use of these bundles but only when and if I want to. I would be amazed if Cosmote didn't operate in the same way. Because of the high cost per minute charged on pre-pay phones and the way they are applied, i.e. a minimum amount of time charged for each call even if it is only a few seconds, I have often found it better to use the bundle even though I am an extremely light user.

Warwick


We are sufficiently old-fashioned enough to still have the antediluvian phones that only make and receive calls and texts. We use our mobiles so infrequently that it's just not cost effective to have a contract with any of the providers. Vodaphone does on the face of it provide an opt-out for people like us (Press button 3) but it never works. A bit like the old ΔΕΗ which for years offered English language (Press button 9), but it never worked! (it does now).. Ah well. Press on regardless. Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

Kilkis
Posts: 11721
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby Kilkis » Sat Jan 11, 2020 10:48 am

I don't think it matters whether you are using a smart phone or a basic mobile phone and you don't need a contract. I used my PC to create an account. Note this is simply an account not a contract. I found the Vodafone web site on my browser and on the home page there was a control to login/register. The Cosmote home page has a similar control. Follow the "Registration" path to create a new ID providing whatever they ask for, e.g. user name, email address, password, confirmation of password and phone number. That should create an account associated with that mobile number that you can log onto and do things like topping up with a credit card and/or activating/deactivating bundles/packages. I don't use Cosmote so I don't know exactly how it works with them but I would guess it is similar to Vodafone.

Alternatively have you tried asking in a Cosmote shop. Ask them to deactivate the automatic package selection for you.

Warwick

moggieman
Posts: 616
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2007 11:30 am
Location: pano stalos
Contact:

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby moggieman » Sat Jan 11, 2020 1:23 pm

Warwick
Many thanks for that information. Is it possible to use this system to top up internet please. At this time i use a dongle and monthly have to visit a Vodafone shop.

Kilkis
Posts: 11721
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby Kilkis » Sat Jan 11, 2020 1:45 pm

I'm not sure, Moggieman. Ask the next time you are in a Vodafone shop. They might be able to create an ID for you.

Warwick

bobscott
Posts: 2691
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby bobscott » Sat Jan 11, 2020 5:47 pm

Kilkis wrote:Alternatively have you tried asking in a Cosmote shop. Ask them to deactivate the automatic package selection for you.

Warwick


Yes Warwick, this whole thread started following a visit to Germanos in Souda who insisted that we could not avoid the 'free gift'. Once we had topped up the phone in the Germanos shop, and left with a balance of €2.86 (we paid €12) we thought that would be it. But no. Thinking we were using our 350 minutes of free calls, we have made two very short calls to local numbers, probably a total of 3 minutes altogether. Our balance has gone down to €0.77 !!! We will be in there again on Monday to find out what is happening! Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

Bagshot
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:37 am
Location: Crete

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby Bagshot » Sat Jan 11, 2020 6:47 pm

A few weeks ago I visited the Germanos shop in Souda to obtain information on the lowest cost Cosmote pay-as-you-go tariff. They quoted me a silly high price, which I mentally binned.

Subsequently, I was told by a third party that I should have gone to a Cosmote outlet, because they will offer lower priced options. Still a bit more than I wanted to pay, but might suit you. I think you might have to press them for these options, as I get the feeling that they want to make a lot of money from us!

A little off topic, but I recently discovered a 1-2-3 deal from O2 in the UK. That's 1p per Mbit, 2p per text and 3p per minute to UK numbers. No contract, pay-as-you-go, and I also have an auto top up arrangement.

Kamisiana
Posts: 380
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2017 4:06 pm

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby Kamisiana » Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:17 am

1p Mobile https://www.1pmobile.com/

1p per minute 1p per text minimum top up 10 every four months runs off EE network

Kilkis
Posts: 11721
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby Kilkis » Sun Jan 12, 2020 12:37 pm

Kamisiana wrote:1p Mobile https://www.1pmobile.com/

1p per minute 1p per text minimum top up 10 every four months runs off EE network


Great if you are living in the UK? Quote from 1pmobile web site my highlight in red:

    Fair use guidelines for Roam-like-at-home within the EU/EEA.

    As part of the roam-like-at-home legislation set by the EU regulator all mobile phone customers have certain usage obligations which they need to consider as part of use of our Service in relation to roaming in our EU/EEA/Zone1.

    You may only use our services in the EU/EEA/Zone1 destinations for periodic travel, like holidays or short breaks.

    As part of our fair use policy, we may monitor and check your roaming use over a rolling 4-month period. If, during this period, you have spent more time abroad than at home and your roaming usage exceeds your domestic usage, we will contact you and ask you to clarify your situation. You will have 14 days to do so.
    If you continue to spend more time abroad than you do at home and your roaming consumption continues to exceed your domestic usage we reserve the right to start applying a surcharge to your roaming consumption. The surcharges are as follows:

    Calls to UK/EU/EEA landlines and UK/EU/EEA mobiles 3p per minute.
    Text to UK/EU/EEA mobiles 1p per message.
    Data 1p per MB.

    There is also the possibility that the local network will block your service if they see your phone/SIM is connected for extended periods beyond 60 consecutive days.

Bob lives permanently in Crete. I have a Virgin UK SIM which I very rarely use when I am in Greece. I think I get away with it because I don't really cost them anything although it is connected all the time. I suspect anybody trying to use any of the UK providers regularly in Greece is going to get caught out eventually by their fair use policy. Obviously people living in the UK and only visiting Greece for short periods won't have a problem unless things change after Brexit.

Warwick

altohb
Posts: 927
Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2007 2:51 pm
Location: Sitia

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby altohb » Sun Jan 12, 2020 3:29 pm

bobscott wrote:
Kilkis wrote:Alternatively have you tried asking in a Cosmote shop. Ask them to deactivate the automatic package selection for you.

Warwick


Yes Warwick, this whole thread started following a visit to Germanos in Souda who insisted that we could not avoid the 'free gift'. Once we had topped up the phone in the Germanos shop, and left with a balance of €2.86 (we paid €12) we thought that would be it. But no. Thinking we were using our 350 minutes of free calls, we have made two very short calls to local numbers, probably a total of 3 minutes altogether. Our balance has gone down to €0.77 !!! We will be in there again on Monday to find out what is happening! Bob.


I suspect you have been caught out because you dialled non Cosmote numbers, Bob. Some of these bundles are quite cunning - I have a Vodafone sim, and have often found my credit "eaten" if I've called non Vodafone numbers (mobiles or landlines), though the bundle I use now gives my x minutes to Vodafone and y minutes to non Vodafone.

bobscott
Posts: 2691
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby bobscott » Sun Jan 12, 2020 4:25 pm

altohb. Thanks for that. The blurb at the beginning of the process does say it applies to 'all national networks', not just Cosmote. Aggrieved of Kokkino Horio! aka Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

Kookla
Posts: 130
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2016 4:24 pm

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby Kookla » Sun Jan 12, 2020 7:46 pm

Good luck at the shop Bob and please keep us posted with how you get on. I too am looking for a pay-as-you go type deal. My husband ended up being sold a Vodafone package, I think 19 euro per month. I don’t use a mobile enough to warrant that. However I do fear if I start with Cosmote, I will/might be penalised for phoning him on a different network.

paul g
Posts: 207
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 9:20 pm
Location: Nr. Kato Gouves

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby paul g » Mon Jan 13, 2020 10:08 am

Re: Greek Vodafone mobiles

Don't forget that texts sent to UK O2 mobiles and mobiles on virtual networks floated on the O2 network do not get through and still get charged.

hairybloke
Posts: 87
Joined: Tue Dec 07, 2010 5:31 pm

Re: Mobile phone scam

Postby hairybloke » Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:37 pm

Hi Bob, we had something similar happen. We have an ancient dumb phone, and accidentally got/were given a Vodafone bundle of data (lots) and minutes (few) when we topped up 10 euros. We didn't/couldn't use the data, and quickly used the few minutes and then had to top up again. We've found dialling 1252, then 1, 2, 2, gets you past the "only for you" bundles/packages so your 10/12 euros gives you 10/12 euros in calls (minus the tax bla bla).


Return to “Chatter”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests