TSTT is advising customers against returning missed calls from unfamiliar foreign numbers as this appears to be part of a “premium rate scam” designed to incur significant charges to their mobile phones or landline bills.
TSTT was responding to posts on social media by several people who received calls apparently originating from the African country of Somalia.
Several Newsday newsroom staff also received calls from telephone numbers- +252-7-5001-989/ +252-7-5001-988 which were later identified by caller id as allegedly originating from the Horn of Africa country.
In a media release on Saturday, TSTT said it is “aware of an influx of 'one ring' telephone calls originating from the +252 (Somalia) country code.”“This activity appears to be part of a premium rate scam intended to prey on unsuspecting recipients who return these calls and stay on the line for an extended period.”
“Customers are encouraged not to return these calls since they may result in significant charges.”TSTT said numbers are randomly dialled from an automated system in these type of scams though it also noted that “these scams do not typically entail hacking of customer's phones.”
“As TSTT works to safeguard the interest of its customers, the company will continue to closely monitor activities associated with this scam and work assiduously to block affiliated numbers.”This type of scam is not isolated to TT as a Facebook user posted an article from the internet news service “the Local” which had an article about Swedish police warning Swedes to “avoid answering calls from unknown foreign numbers after apparent telephone scammers from Somalia targeted Swedish phones.”The article was posted on May 29, 2017.