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Vodafone warns of false promotions

Less than a month after its official launch in Samoa, telecommunications giant Vodafone Samoa has warned of a third party scammer using its name to offer customers fraudulent promotions. 

An initial warning about a possible scam was sent out to Vodafone customers two weeks ago; the most recent warning came last weekend. 

Vodafone also encouraged customers to report any such calls or text messages containing fraudulent offers to the Office of the Regulator (O.O.T.R.).

The company indicated that it would not, in any circumstance, give away its customers' numbers without permission.

"Dear Customers, if in the past days you have received Phone Calls or SMS stating you have won a free sim card with benefits, please note [this is not] a Vodafone promotion," the message from Vodafone says. 

"Vodafone being the responsible organization would never give out your private phone number without your consent.  

"The third party who has provided you with this offer has done so illegally & we suggest you raise a complaint to the Office of the Regulator immediately."

Although the Samoa Observer understands that it is not only Vodafone customers who are being targeted by such false promotion calls.

Such calls are being made from an 'Unknown Caller' I.D. and customers are reportedly being offered free SIM cards and other mobile phone 'deals'.

One Digicel customer, who did not want to be identified, told the Samoa Observer that they received a suspicious call from a woman speaking fluent Samoan offering 'a deal' if he were to switch to Vodafone.

She did not say what the deal was but the caller referred to the customer as a ‘winning number'.

The Acting Regulator, Fesola'i Cecily Fa'asau. said no complaints have been received regarding this matter.

"No complaints [have been] received relative to your citation from either customers or service providers," she told this newspaper in response to questions. 

"Unsolicited telecommunications are not permitted by law by virtue of Order of the Regulator T2015/03."

Attempts to get a comment from the Vodafone Chief Executive Officer, Satish Sharma, have been unsuccessful.

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