Phone bill warning to parents over mobile app charges

Updated on: 2013-01-17 || Source:


Anger over huge phone bills caused by purchases made within mobile applications has grown.

Regulator PhonepayPlus has noted a 300% increase in complaints from consumers faced with an unexpectedly large phone bill.

Many apps can be downloaded for free, but users are then encouraged to buy extra items.

Other free apps contained malware that tricked users into running up bills, the regulator added.

Children's "naivety" on social media was also causing concern among parents, PhonepayPlus said.

The regulator said it was working with Facebook to make sure rogue offers and promotions were removed from the site as quickly as possible.

In most mobile app stores, it is free games that make their way to the top of the most downloaded charts, so many games makers have opted for the in-app sales business model.

Burning holes

Many titles, such as the massively popular Angry Birds, give players the chance to progress more quickly in the game by spending small amounts of money.


PhonepayPlus said its figures suggested that two in three 11- to 16-year-olds had downloaded their own apps.

The regulator warned that parents could see bills of "hundreds or even thousands of pounds" as a result of these in-app purchases.

In one of the more extreme cases, it was reported that children had downloaded counterfeit versions of games from Google's Android app store.

These games were infected with malware which, whenever opened, billed £15 to the user's phone bill without their knowledge.

PhonepayPlus' chief executive Paul Whiteing said parents must be vigilant.

"Connected devices will define the age in which today's children live and we are determined to ensure that they can receive the benefits while being protected from the risks," he said.

"Smartphones in children's pockets can burn holes in parents' wallets, so we are working with partners across industry and other agencies to prevent this.

"This is a real challenge for parents and for us as a regulator, but this plan meets that challenge head on."


Blackphone 2 'privacy' Android handset revamped
Security firm Silent Circle has revamped its smartphone that helps people manage personal data.
Chinese smartphones mount massive web attack
More than 650,000 Chinese smartphones have been unwittingly enrolled in a massive attack that overwhelmed a web
Hilton investigates hack claims
The Hilton hotel group has said it is investigating claims its US shops and gift stores may be the source of
Twitter website 'blocked' in Turkey
Twitter users in Turkey report that the social media site has been blocked in the country.


Sign up to received our free newsletter!
E-mail ID:


Views: 6167 Times
Radial Blur READ MORE
Views: 3065 Times
Google's Chrome browser to be available on Apple's iPad, iPhone READ MORE
Views: 3130 Times
Raspberry Pi faces challenge from Android-based rivals READ MORE
Views: 6215 Times
How To Print From Android Devices READ MORE
Views: 7508 Times
Movie Maker Video Editing Tutorial READ MORE

Home|IT News|Computer Tips|Video Tutorials|Download Softwares|Subjects|Contact Us
Copyright © 2019. Jumbo Education (Information Technology). All rights reserved.
Free counter and web stats

Large Visitor Globe