The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) will soon mandate mobile phone companies to have dedicated “Do Not Disturb” services that shield mobile phone users from unsolicited messages.
When the mandate goes into force, Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) will dedicate a short code on their networks for use by subscribers to opt-in to the “Do Not Disturb” database “restricting unsolicited marketing messages (Voice and SMS) on their MSISDNs”, the telecoms watchdog says.
The regulatory directive on unsolicited messages will soon see the telecoms watchdog issuing a Direction on the issue following complaints by phone users, according to latest reports of the series of enforcement activities by NCC in Q4 2015.
NCC says it “received various complaints from telecoms subscribers regarding unsolicited text messages and nuisance calls from mobile network operators in the industry.”
Following these complaints, the telecoms regulator mounted a watch to monitor that “networks to ensure that Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) create a Do Not Disturb (DND) database for subscribers who do not want to receive unsolicited messages on their lines.”
According to NCC, “whereas, the Commission’s compliance checks revealed that most MNOs have set up the DND facility on their networks, however, the awareness of existence of this facility is very low because the MNOs are reluctant to sensitize their subscribers on the availability of this facility and how to opt into same.”
According to the watchdog’s report, “further investigations suggest that operators were not actually keen on the DND as this may affect their revenue stream from value added services.”
To arrest the situation, NCC say it has commenced the process of issuing a Direction that Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) dedicate a Short Code on their networks for use by Subscribers to opt-in to the Do Not Disturb Database restricting unsolicited marketing messages (Voice and SMS) on their MSISDNs.”
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