Board: Cell phone scams increasing in Illinois

Board: Cell phone scams increasing in Illinois

Credit: JAY DIRECTO/AFP/Getty Images

Shoppers at a mall send text messages using mobile phones September 9, 2009. Consumers in the Philippines are up in arms over a plan in Congress to impose excise tax on text and multimedia messages sent through mobile phones. With some 70 million mobile phone users and up to 300 million messages criss-crossing across mobile networks, the Philippines is widely considered as the world's texting capital. AFP PHOTO / JAY DIRECTO

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AP

Posted on December 5, 2012 at 7:55 AM

CHICAGO (AP) -- The consumer advocacy group Citizens Utility Board says scams that add charges to customers’ cell phone bills have almost doubled in Illinois the past year.

The board said in a news release Tuesday that scammers appear to be targeting cell phone users as wireless communication increases and new laws outlaw so-called cramming on land lines. Cramming refers to third-party charges added to cell phone bills for services customers never ordered.

The board says crammers get access to phone bills through text messages promising prizes or through ringtone downloads and then hope phone owners don’t notice the relatively small charges on their bills.

The board says phone owners should scan bills closely for charges they don’t recognize.

The Federal Communications Commission is considering tougher laws to protect cell phone owners.

 

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