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Killing Unwanted Text Messages from Yahoo! Alerts?

Cliff posted more than 11 years ago | from the dealing-with-phone-spam dept.

Spam 388

Creighti asks: "When I first got my new cellphone I immediately received several automated Text Message 'Alerts' from Yahoo and MSN which recurred on a daily basis. My guess was (is) that the previous owner of my cell phone number signed up for these things. Six months later I'm still getting unwanted text messages from Yahoo! Alerts. I managed to get rid of the MSN messages by signing up with MSN (gack), registering the phone number as mine, and de-selecting all text messages. I've tried the same trick with Yahoo. I've tried filling out the Yahoo! Help form that appeared to apply (interestingly enough, the Yahoo Help entry I've used several times to request they stop sending the unwanted alert appears to have been removed, but clicking the 'No' button on this page would work). I've even tried emailing abuse@yahoo.com. Anyone else getting text-message spammed by Yahoo! (or any other service)? Any suggestions for what I should do next to try and get Yahoo! to stop sending these unwanted messages?" Why aren't the text message preferences deleted when the cancellation notices comes thru?

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fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918162)

fp

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N0t (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918164)

frist post.

Bacon, bacon, who's got the bacon?

First Post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918166)

Woo!

IN SOVIET RUSSIA (-1, Troll)

CmdrTypo (603848) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918168)

text message kills YOU!

I would... (4, Informative)

SaturnTim (445813) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918170)


Send them a bill. They are using your airtime, with something you didn't ask for. If they don't want to pay the bill, they will find a way to stop it.

--T

Re:I would... (5, Insightful)

BrK (39585) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918197)

I'm sure Yahoo! would happily ignore your bill. If you were lucky it *might* get posted on the bulletin board, next to the cafeteria menu for the week, as humor.

Unless the cellphone number has been given out to a lot of people, I would just change it. It's the path of least resistance...

Re:I would... (3, Informative)

shepd (155729) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918316)

>I'm sure Yahoo! would happily ignore your bill.

And this gives you cause to sue them in small claims court.

If the amount of messaging exceeds $50-$100, it could be worth suing them in small claims. They probably won't even show up, and a decision will be reached (probably in your favour) in absentia.

Of course, IANAL, so don't follow that as legal advice. :-)

Re:I would... (1)

ch-chuck (9622) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918266)

If they don't want to pay the bill

they, um, won't pay the bill - often using the 'just try and collect' tactic.

Re:I would... (3, Insightful)

IdleTime (561841) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918379)

Why don't you just call Yahoo, use the phone man! That's what they are for. Then traverse the hierarcy until you find the one responsible, but start at the top.

Just call them each time you get a message, sooner or later they'll get tired.

Contact your telco (5, Insightful)

dorward (129628) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918172)

I suggest that instead of continuing to try to get Yahoo to stop sending the messages you instead contact your telephone company and ask them to block the messages before they get to your phone.

As they are making money off you and Yahoo isn't, you are more likely to get a useful response.

Re:Contact your telco (1, Interesting)

TurdTapper (608491) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918351)

I've tried this with my land-line phone and it isn't that easy to get them to do it. I'm sure that a wireless company, since they charge by the airtime, would want to help you out on this more than SBC Ameritech would.

We kept getting calls from a telemarketing company in NYC where no one was ever on the other end of the line when we answered. When I asked Ameritech if they would block this particular phone number they said that could only do it if we reported it to the police as harassment and they got a court order to block it.

One more reason to drop my land-line altogether and stop shelling money to those people.

Re:Contact your telco (4, Informative)

bbonnn (519410) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918354)

Actually, this is not an entirely uncommon issue with telcos ... theoretically, people can send unwanted Spam to SMS email gateways. For example, if your number is 650-555-1212 and your carrier is Cingular, you automatically have an SMS email address, which means that people can send you SMS messages from their email accounts. In Cingular's case, your SMS email address is 6505551212@XXXXXXX.XXXcingular.com. So, all a spammer has to do is send email messages to 6501111111@XXXXXXX.XXXcingular.com, 6501111112@XXXXXXX.XXXcingular.com, etc. Bingo, you get unwanted SMS on your phone

Most carriers' response? Cancel SMS on your wireless account. Granted, you won't be able then to receive ANY SMS messages, but that's not their problem. Frustrating? Yes. Welcome to the world of wireless telco.

Re:Contact your telco (2)

rcw-work (30090) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918359)

A couple years ago I called Airtouch to request exactly that - something was sending an (apparently) automated numeric page to one of the new pagers we got.

Airtouch's policy was that they couldn't stop it and they required a court order to tell me where they were coming from.

We ended up changing the pager's number.

Why not send them a text message then? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918174)

Sorry, couldn't resist.

IN SOVIET RUSSIA... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918175)

YOU SPAM YAHOO!

IN NAZI GERMANY... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918294)

you could be arrested for spamming something!

Wow (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918179)

Jusus Fucking Christ, who gives a shit!!!

Oops... (5, Funny)

gUmbi (95629) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918180)

I didn't think of that...I feel sorry for the owners of my last 3 cellphone numbers.

Talk to your carrier. (2)

glrotate (300695) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918184)

Get them to block the originating #, or get them to change yours.

first post (-1, Offtopic)

siur (605827) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918185)

first post!!!!!!!

Breaking news ..... (-1, Offtopic)

binaryDigit (557647) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918186)

Sony, Matsushita Back Linux For Consumer Goods!

The popular tech news site slashdot.org repo [slashdot.org] rted [slashdot.org] that the consumer tech giants will cooperatively work on a version of Linux for consumer products!

Why don't the messages stop? (5, Informative)

HaeMaker (221642) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918187)

Because these alerts are like a mailing list subscription and the phone number is like an email address. The problem is phone numbers are reused, where email addresses, generally, are not.

Yahoo or MSN do not receive notification when someone cancels their phone account.

With e-mail.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918188)

With an e-mail account, you can simply login to the site and tell them that you forgot your password. As a kind service, they promptly mail you the password and you can login and change the settings ... or so I've heard ... Is a similar feature available with cell phones?

Hmm, not sure you've done this... (5, Informative)

prostoalex (308614) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918189)

Have you tried this?

Yahoo! Mobile Devices [yahoo.com] , log in under your Yahoo account and select "Add a New Device", then add your phone number, or e-mail for the cell phone, depending on what your operator supports and then specifically do not choose any alerts.

Re:Hmm, not sure you've done this... (1)

edrugtrader (442064) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918279)

that is what he did for MSN... it wouldn't work for yahoo though... probably returning a "this number is already registered to someone else" error message.

Re:Hmm, not sure you've done this... (5, Informative)

HelbaSluice (634789) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918306)

Not that simple. I had this same problem, and no matter what I tried, no "Yahoo Mobile Device" I created could ever grok that there was ALREADY a record in a database somewhere instructing them to SMSpam that same number on a daily basis.

I successfully signed up for and then cancelled THE SAME MESSAGE SERVICE for my phone--and for the couple days it was active, successfully received two messages. My phone happily collapsed those into one message, with a "removing duplicates" warning.

Whatever else is going on, Yahoo does NOT require that a "Mobile Device" have a unique phone number. Or at least, didn't at the time I was trying this.

Fortunately, the volume of messages I was getting was nowhere near my monthly limit. I got pretty quick at ignoring them. A few months later they started getting inconsistent--skipping one or two days on occasion. Eventually they just petered out, and I haven't had one now in over a year.

Preferences (5, Interesting)

vondo (303621) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918190)

Why aren't the text message preferences deleted when the cancellation notices comes thru?


Just a guess, but probably what is registered is an e-mail address like 3215551212@sprintpcs.com which is how e-mail can find its way to SprintPCS phones. The service you sign up for may have no relation to your cell provider, so cancelling one doesn't cancel the other and then your phone number (and hence e-mail address) can be recycled.

Re:Preferences (3, Informative)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918342)

"but probably what is registered is an e-mail address like 3215551212@sprintpcs.com which is how e-mail can find its way to SprintPCS phones."

Am I the only Sprint PCS customer that doesn't have an e-mail address like this? Mine has the same user name as my standard e-mail account and the phone number is only useful if you use Sprint PCS's web form to send a text message.

Re:Preferences (2)

vondo (303621) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918391)

I think I have both (but don't pay for the service, so don't get the mail).

It may depend on how long you've been a customer. I think at some point they introduced the alphabetical names. I've been a subscriber for about 3 years, I guess.

Try the numeric one and see if it works.

Phone spam (1)

coinreturn (617535) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918192)

Just another reason NOT to get a fancy phone with internet abilities - Phone Spam.

Re:Phone spam (3, Informative)

Jucius Maximus (229128) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918220)

"Just another reason NOT to get a fancy phone with internet abilities - Phone Spam."

Sneakemail and other aliasing services can be used to avoid this as well. Instead of sending the mail to 5551234567@sms.phoneprovider.com you can send it to a sneakemail address which will bounce it to your SMS. This way you can kill off the sneakemail address if necessary and stop the spam easily.

Not to be a pain in the a**... (-1, Insightful)

bobbabemagnet (247383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918194)

But what is this doing on the front page? This is something you ask a smaller specialized forum, not the slashdot community. I can hardly see how this will generate meaningful or intellectual discussion, and I can definitely not see how this is news for nerds or stuff that matters.

Re:Not to be a pain in the a**... (3, Interesting)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918235)

Perhaps because:
  1. While the problem might be small now, it can only grow bigger in the future
  2. It's a slow newsday
  3. How often do you see yahoo-bashing on /.?

Re:Not to be a pain in the a**... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918302)

Perhaps because:
  1. While the problem might be small now, it can only grow bigger in the future
  2. It's a slow newsday
  3. How often do you see yahoo-bashing on /.?
4. Profit!!!

Re:Not to be a pain in the a**... (2, Offtopic)

pspeed (12169) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918276)

Just wait, it will be posted again as top story in a few hours. ;)

Re:Not to be a pain in the a**... (5, Insightful)

exhilaration (587191) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918280)

Disable this category in your preferences and stop bothering us.

Re:Not to be a pain in the a**... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918300)

b/c it is chock full of /. buzz-word goodness
a quick scan reveals 'spam' 'cell-phone' AND 'MSN' (MS* being the /. uber-buzzword)

how could this NOT end up on the front page??

Well if it's with Sprint (1)

inteller (599544) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918196)

I believe that yahoo alerts don't cost anything. Except for the annoyance.

Thanks for the idea. (1)

KPU (118762) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918242)

Now I can tell my friends to forge e-mail from yahoo so I don't have to pay for their messages.

Re:Well if it's with Sprint (2)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918275)

But other providers charge $$$, either on an per-message basis, or for every message over a certain number per month.

But that's not the point here. Even if you don't pay extra to receive spam, you still don't want it. Since he doesn't want these alerts, to him, they're spam.

5 years ago, it was computer email spam. Today it's cell-phone spam. Who knows what it'll be in 5 years, or what the costs will be? Especially since some spammers are trying blocks of cell phone numbers.

Re:Well if it's in your head (0, Offtopic)

chef_raekwon (411401) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918310)

in 5 years, when the government installs that 'chip' into your head, you'll have some 'head'spam.

try gettin rid of that ;)

Re:Well if it's with Sprint (2, Funny)

archeopterix (594938) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918327)

5 years ago, it was computer email spam. Today it's cell-phone spam. Who knows what it'll be in 5 years, or what the costs will be?
Spammers spamming my internet-enabled fridge with free samples of spam?

Re:Well if it's with Sprint (2)

exhilaration (587191) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918311)

Exactly, Voicestream's policy was that you could send/receive 10 SMS msgs per month, and an additional $2.95/month allowed you send/receive 200 per month.

If you go over your quota, the cost was either 10 cents or 25 cents per message.

I don't think that T-Mobile altered this policy.

Special White House Breaking News: +1, Patriotic (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918199)



CANADIANS TO LEAD WEAPONS INSPECTION TEAM INTO USA

November 21, 2002

(Toronto) - A coalition of Canadian peace groups today
announced their intention to send an international team of
volunteer weapons inspectors into the United States later
this winter. The coalition, Rooting Out Evil, are recruiting
inspectors through their newly launched website,
Routing Out Evil [rootingoutevil.org]
.
"Our action has been inspired by none other than George W.
Bush," said Christy Ferguson, a spokesperson for the group.
"The Bush administration has repeatedly declared that the
most dangerous rogue nations are those that:
1) have massive stockpiles of chemical, biological, andnuclear weapons;
2) ignore due process at the United Nations;
3) refuse to sign and honour international treaties; and
4) have come to power through illegitimate means.
"On the basis of President Bush's guidelines, it is clear
that the current U.S. administration poses a great threat to
global security," said Ferguson. "We're following Bush's
lead and demanding that the U.S. grant our inspectors
immediate and unfettered access to any site in the country -
including all presidential compounds - so that we can
identify the weapons of mass destruction in this rogue
state," added David Langille.
Visitors to Rooting Out Evil's website are invited to sign
on as honorary members of the weapons inspection team.
Honorary inspectors can participate in the action, or they
can simply lend the support of their name as they would on a
petition. The actual inspection team that crosses the
border will be comprised of prominent individuals from
Canada and other countries.
The Rooting Out Evil coalition includes Greenpeace Canada,
the Centre for Social Justice, and the Toronto Committee
Against War and Sanctions on Iraq, and is supported by
American groups such as the National Network to End the War
Against Iraq, Global Exchange and the US section of the
Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. They
oppose the development, storage, and use of weapons of mass
destruction by any state.--For information: David Langille or Christy Ferguson
info@rootingoutevil.orgDavid Langille, Director of Public Affairs
CENTRE FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE489 College Street, Suite 303Toronto, OntarioM6G 1A5
Tel: 416-927-0777 x225Fax: 416-927-7771Toll free: 1-888-803-8881
Email: langille@socialjustice.orgWebsite: http://www.socialjustice.org
Not interested in a war against Iraq?

Become a Weapons Inspector [rootingoutevil.org]

Cheers,
Woot

Re:Special White House Breaking News: +1, Patrioti (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918233)

You stupid, trolling canuck.

Re:Special White House Breaking News: +1, Patrioti (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918292)

Fuck Canada

Re:Special White House Breaking News: +1, Patrioti (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918383)

Lets watch America destroy countries all over the globe because Bush can't pronounce their names...

"Hey Donny, is it I-ROCK or I-RACK?"

What a MORON. (c) 2002, Canadian Government. All Rights Reserved.

A *somewhat* related question... (5, Insightful)

Micah (278) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918205)

Ok, not about cell phone text, but about getting Yahoo to stop things...

I have an *ancient* Geocities home page, that was set up before Yahoo acquired them. I am "yoderm" on Yahoo and was on Geocities before the acquisition. Unfortunately, the GC home page is not associated with my Yahoo account. I now have no way of logging into the thing, and really want it deleted.

I've sent two messages through their "help" center, but no response. I've tried every support@ and help@ type e-mail I could think of for yahoo.com, geocities.com, and yahoo-inc.com. They all either bounce or get an automated reply that says "go to the help center".

Conclusion: Yahoo goes WAY out of their way to avoid dealing with human "customers".

Re:A *somewhat* related question... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918257)

An automated daily/hourly/minutely/secondly email gently reminding them to remove you seems in order. I know the time I used this technique, I was successful at getting their attention, which is all I wanted.

Re:A *somewhat* related question... (2)

Archfeld (6757) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918262)

I had/have the same problem and to my knowledge there is NO WAY to get them to delete it. The only way I found was to upgrade to the new service, the free one that is and then delete my pages. This still left the broken link redirect but at least my content was gone...YAHOO blows all around.

Re:A *somewhat* related question... (2)

John_Booty (149925) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918291)

I have an *ancient* Geocities home page, that was set up before Yahoo acquired them. I am "yoderm" on Yahoo and was on Geocities before the acquisition. Unfortunately, the GC home page is not associated with my Yahoo account. I now have no way of logging into the thing, and really want it deleted.

That sucks. Not that you should have to jump through such hoops, but what if you try making the site a Terms Of Service violation? You could hammer it with wget to constantly exceed the bandwidth allocation, or maybe falsely say there's some sort of, I dunno... Nazi propaganda on there? I dunno, I don't know exactly what it takes to get a site kicked off of Geocities. Good luck. :P

Re:A *somewhat* related question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918374)

>I dunno, I don't know exactly what it takes to get a site kicked off of Geocities.

This should pretty much guarantee it.

Make a file 2 MB long of random data. Name it "-=GTA vice city !!PS2 DVD!! cracked by RAZOR 1911=- par 1 or 12.P01". Copy it as many times as space allows (inreasing the archive number, of course), and post a link to it on various warez sites.

In no time the site will be toast...

If you can't do that, then again, simply post links to every picture and piece of content to warez sites and say they are cracks for popular software named to "normal" names that have to be changed to .zip to extract to avoid being "caught". ;-)

I wouldn't do this with your real name, or from your own 'net account, though.

Re:A *somewhat* related question... (2, Informative)

secolactico (519805) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918297)

I had exactly the same problem, only I wasn't trying to delete my page. In the end, I just bought a domain and hosted my page somewhere else. I *was* going to host my domain with Yahoo, up that point.

There's just no way to contact Yahoo customer service.

well duh (0, Troll)

GreenJeepMan (398443) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918206)

"Any suggestions for what I should do next to try and get Yahoo! to stop sending these unwanted messages".

Have you tried turning off your cell phone?

Sue - Its the American Way (5, Funny)

csritchie (631120) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918207)

Go through your local fast food drive-thru, order a coffee and make sure you spill it on yourself as you are reading your messages. I'm pretty sure the warning labels on the coffee do not yet include: Warning! Do not drink while reading text messages.

heres a good idea (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918213)

install linux on your phone so you'll be guaranteed no features what-so-ever and never have to worry about turning on your phone except recompile your kernel in 36 hours. voice communication will be available in kernel 2.6

RE: Why aren't the ~ preferences deleted... (1)

JaffoGLIDE (246980) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918214)

Likely, the service is setup to send email to the phone? I am not familiar with your service...I use AT&T, and I get phone-spammed all the time. With AT&T you just send email to phone#@attws.com (or something). Yahoo may not know that the account changed...not that this excuses their terrible sounding customer interface for this stuff. I agree with other statements, you should go to your service provider and get them to filter it, if possible.

I have to remember that excuse (4, Funny)

typical geek (261980) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918217)

honest honey, all the porno text ads are from the previous owner of the cell phone.

Re:I have to remember that excuse (5, Funny)

Anonvmous Coward (589068) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918339)

"honest honey, all the porno text ads are from the previous owner of the cell phone."

"Then explain why you paid $400 for a phone with a color screen."

It's a dupe !! (1, Offtopic)

rixster (249481) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918226)

Sorry - force of habit

Re:It's a dupe !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918386)

Force of habit for a loser, maybe. Loser. You are a loser.

Yahoo support sucks :( (2)

Flamesplash (469287) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918229)

I've found that Yahoo's support for free services really really sucks. I can see why, but I'm starting to doubt any support even exists for these services. Good luck, though I think you are screwed.

Re:Yahoo support sucks :( (1)

Gomer Pyle (566981) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918357)

I've been there. They've always ignored any question from me that they didn't have a cookie cutter answer for.

Standard OSS response (2)

exhilaration (587191) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918401)

If you don't like Yahoo, start YOUR OWN portal/webmail/community system.

All you need is broadband a box running Linux. Horde [horde.org] has pretty much everything you'd need, and there's plenty of free stuff out there to make up for any shortcomings.

I'm running Horde off my cable connection - they block port 80 but I don't care because I do everything via SSL anyway.

And in the process you'll learn a hell of a lot about networking and Linux.

Cancellation Notice??? (3, Insightful)

kevlar (13509) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918232)

Why aren't the text message preferences deleted when the cancellation notices comes thru?

Yahoo essentially knows nothing about the phone number. All it knows is that there is a number (or more abstractly, an email address) through which it should send its junk. They don't know who/what/where otherwise. They know nothing about who currently owns which phone #.

Re:Cancellation Notice??? (2)

BrK (39585) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918387)

True 'dat

Also keep in mind that most text messages are limited to an insanely small amount of characters, typ. 120-300. You think they want to waste "precious marketing space" with such frivolities as unsubscribe info?

Putting an evil flip on the question... (5, Interesting)

frankie (91710) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918234)

...how easy is it to dick with people you don't like by registering their cell phone number with dozens of text alert sites? If these messages don't include a way to unsubscribe, they probably aren't confirmed opt-in either.

Re:Putting an evil flip on the question... (1)

who what why (320330) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918345)

I signed up for some yahoo alerts, which are actually a pretty cool service for free, as long as you can swallow their privacy policy. I recall that they sent a code to my phone first, which I had to enter on the website before I could sign up for anything.

Of course, that doesn't help with unsubscribing if someone has already registered your number iwth them... I guess they should make these things time-limited so that you have to renew them every month or two.

They run some cool stuff like sending reminders based on your yahoo calender, or sending a weather alert every day so you can dress up nice and warm when you need to. (and yes, I need this hand holding stuff, unlike most slashbots I don't live with my mum!)

Re:Putting an evil flip on the question... (1)

Corporate Troll (537873) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918348)

While you mean it funny... I'd rather say you shouldn't do stuff like that. I mean, even if you dislike someone that much, it still ethically unacceptable to nag people that way. If you would dislike this happening to yourself, you shouldn't do it to anyone! Just ignore people that you don't like.
I've recently heard of people nagging Trolls on Slashdot by phone/email/sms and I think that's even more childish than being a Troll on slashdot. (Note: even though my nick says I'm a Troll, I'm not... I'm a converted Troll.)

Re:Putting an evil flip on the question... (5, Informative)

chefmonkey (140671) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918358)

They are confirmed opt-in. When you first set up a mobile device, Yahoo sends it a message containing a unique password. You are required to type this password into a web page before it starts sending you alerts. So, you'd have to physically get your hands on someone else's phone to sign them up.

Generally works pretty well, except when the phone number changes hands.

Re:Putting an evil flip on the question... (1, Redundant)

quintessent (197518) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918360)

Does anyone have mobile phone numbers for spammers?

Re:Putting an evil flip on the question... (2)

exhilaration (587191) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918362)

I vaguely remember Yahoo sending an opt-in message to my phone with a code that had to be typed back into the website. They're not stupid, you know. :)

A far easier method would be to up a shell script to continuously send interesting messages to $phoneno@$provider.com. I have yet to see any providers offer spam protection (but that might change if Euro-style SMS spam starts in the U.S.)

Re:Putting an evil flip on the question... (0, Offtopic)

circusnews (618726) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918396)

Anyone got the cell phone number of the spam king or his lawyer?

Oh, wait, this is completely off topic, and is something that any reasonable person knows is wrong. As a reasonable person I could not condone, nor would I ever want to see the spam king or his lawyer get spammed via his cell phone. Slashdot moderators please mod this down to -1 Offtopic.

The Key to Advertising (3, Insightful)

ch-chuck (9622) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918239)

is 'circulation' - the reason those morons are so keen on keeping people on their 'hit' list is so they can go to their paying clients and say, "Look! You're message is reaching 250,000 potential customers". The more 'circulation' or ratings a paper, magazine or program has, the more they can charge for it. Nevermind the fact that 249,997 people have just associated $PRODUCT with annoying marketing tactics.

Well it depends ... (2)

SuperDuG (134989) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918245)

Personally I would call the cellphone company where you receive service from and change your freekin phone number.

or turn off SMS

I mean what the hell kinda question is this, did you even bother calling that CUSTOMER SERVICE line that is on your bill??

Happens all the time.. (1)

wxfield (44862) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918249)

Take the phone back, slap it down on the desk and demand a new number. You aren't responsible for the problem, why try to fix it?

I hate this stuff (1)

wikthemighty (524325) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918251)

Not just the text messages, but any ads.

I've only got 2 hours a month on my cell as I really only use it for emergency stuff, and retrieving extra messages like this really adds up quickly.

See if the Cell Phone provider has filtering tools (5, Informative)

wnknisely (51017) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918254)

I have a cellphone with Verizon (and an associated vtext account for messages.) I tried signing up for weather alerts on my cellphone but found out quickly that the messages sent were too long to be useful.

I was able to unsubscribe from the alerts - but even after I unsubscribed from the alerts, I kept receiving advertisements from the service sent to my cellphone.

After a couple of unsucessful attempts to get it stopped I finally poked around on the Vtext site and found out that I was able to block a specified domain from sending to my cellphone.

Blocking the domain of the weather alerts provider killed the spam as well.

See if your provider doesn't let you filter out @yahoo.com messages.

Why (0)

panxerox (575545) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918258)

" Why aren't the text message preferences deleted when the cancellation notices comes thru? " You do know why right?

Same problem with timex messenger watch (2)

smartin (942) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918271)

I have the same problem with my watch. It was receiving messages before i signed up for the paging service and still gets them after i've signed up and have configured it under Yahoo! Alerts. My guess is that Yahoo has a separate ID for the watch and does not know that it should be associated with the phone number that skytel gave me.

Here's one way: (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918283)

Wrap your cell phone in tin foil. If that doesn't work, try wrapping it in tin foil and put it under your tin foil hat.

just turn it off (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918290)

can't you just unsubscribe from text messaging? I mean, how connected do you need to be? I find that if I ignore all my messages and stuff for about half a day, most "important" things were just junk anyway.

Simple answer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918293)

Either tell your telco to block the messages, or just setup your phone not to recieve them. Unless of course your phones in america cant do that yet. Best stick with the telco idea actually...

Oh by the way people, this doesn't HAVE to be done via an email adress (i.e. @.net) - they just send them via SMS direct to your handset. Most phones now will popup with an email rather than a text message if you are sent an email...duh...unless again your phones in america dont support proper email yet...

Hotmail UCE. No, really! (1)

Revvy (617529) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918307)

I've been receiving UCE from MSN Special Offers to my Hotmail account for a couple of months now. I'm not signed up for it, and I _can't_ unsubscribe because their database doesn't think I am subscribed.

I've tried contacting abuse@hotmail.com, abuse@msn.com, and even filed a report on Microsoft's internal SPAM page. Absolutely no response except automated replies stating that I'm not filing the reports with headers (The MSN Special Offers don't have headers because they're generated internally and not sent over email).

Looks like I have some choices:
1. Give up the Hotmail account I've had for several years.
2. Take it.
3. File a complaint with some law-enforcement agency here in the state of WA.

I believe it's $500 a pop after I've notified them, isn't it? That's...over $20k in the past two months! Yeah, right.

Anybody got the email address of a Hotmail PM?

Telemarketer laws? (1, Informative)

classzero (321541) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918312)

In Pennsylvania we have anti-telemarketer laws... we have a statewide list of people that they can not call and if they do they get a heafty fine. If your state has a similar law you could reply to the message saying 'take me off your list'. If they do it again contact your DA. Hell, I'd have already contacted the DA by now.

I know, this does not work with email, but you can probably get a judge to treat this as a telemarketer call.

A solution almost sure to work... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918321)

Call your mobile provider.

Yahoo, providing a free service, could probably care less what you want, particularly if it's to be removed from a service whose membership base helps determine their revenue. (i.e., the more people on an alert/ad list, the more money they get.)

Call your provider, and tell them you're getting Yahoo! alerts you never signed up for and want them stopped. There is almost surely a single domain, IP, or email address they come from. If they're blocked on the mobile phone service's mail transfer agent, yahoo will delete its message preferences for your phone pretty darn quick when they find them bouncing.

Ultimately, YOU pay for every text message that comes to your phone, so the mobile phone company will be the organization most responsive to your complaint. I had this problem once, and my provider DID bend head over heels to make sure it didn't happen again - perhaps it had something to do with my saying I'd call every single time I got another one, and refused to pay for messages I never asked for.

At least you got rid of MS (2)

frovingslosh (582462) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918332)

Some idiot signed up for a passport account and gave them a dummy e-mail address that he just made up. Unfortunately it happens to be for a mailbox that I've used for years. The MS "welcome to .NEt passport" letter doesn't even give you an option to tell them that this address was subscribed in error and to take ou off their lists. I've tried sending e-mails to addresses of real people there, but everything has been ignored. I continue to get crap from them as a result of this bogus sign-up, and can't get rid of them.

Re:At least you got rid of MS (1)

stile (54877) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918397)

What is your email, noone@nowhere.net? If so, I apologize for all of the mailing lists I've signed you up for in the past... ;)

I suggest (1)

killmenow (184444) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918335)

1. Call you cell phone provider.
2. Bitch and moan - get a new phone number.
3. Repeat as necessary.

If the telco keeps having to deal with this hassle, they'll be more likely to put pressure on Yahoo! or find a more permanent solution than to keep giving their customers new numbers.

Yes, it's a hassle to you to change your number; but if it's too much hassle, suck it up and Enjoy! Your! Yahoo! Alerts!

A friend of mine has the exact same problem (5, Informative)

swb (14022) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918340)

And he's not a dumbass, either. He's found his choices are (1) put up with the messages, (2) change phone numbers, or (3) disable text messaging (carrier phenomenon). 1 and 3 are free, 2 costs money (albeit not much).

Why (4) get Yahoo! to! stop! it! please! isn't an option boils down to "they don't listen". It's one of those scary companies where there's no apparent way to actually *contact* anyone who can do something about this. There's no there, there so to speak.

He has said that the wireless carrier was particularly unhelpful, which doesn't surprise me. I had a problem for a while when I got my first cellular with getting FAX calls. They offered to *sell* me caller ID (an expensive option on a limited range of AMPS equipment), but wouldn't do anything about tracking down who it was.

I'm frankly surprised that there isn't more phone spam (how hard is it to figure out that all of a carrier's cell numbers are in NXX-5xx-xxxx?) or that message services don't build in a failsafe way to stop them, like adding a user-specfic hash code to every message and then have a web page where you can go, enter that hash, and disable that phone number's messaging.

Here's what I do.. (2)

_aa_ (63092) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918356)

This doesn't neccesarily apply to this exact situation, but it is related. I use SprintPCS. The SMS address that I am given is (for instance) 1234567890@messaging.sprintpcs.com. That's also my phone number. I think to myself, "I don't neccesarily want people who might SMS me to have my phone number, and I don't neccesarily want people who have my phone number to be able to SMS me." So my solution was to use my domain name (hosted by yahoo :O)) to make an email forwarder, Jared.2600@reack.com forwards to the 1234567890@messaging.sprintpcs.com. First, it's easier to remember. Second, I control it. If I start getting spam or unwanted messages, I can forward that email address to oblivion and make a new one. Also, if I do sign up for some sort of notification service, I can create a whole new forwarding address. Yahoo happens to offer unlimited email forwards with their domain name service, so I take advantage of that. I think most other domain hosts will do the same.

Cancelled? (2, Informative)

FS (10110) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918368)

Why aren't the text message preferences deleted when the cancellation notices comes thru?

Simple, those notification messages aren't in any way related to that phone. A user is unlikely to cancel his/her yahoo account just because they cancelled their phone service.

It's obviously a problem, but definitely not an intentional one on Yahoo's part. An article like this on Slashdot is probably enough to get them to put up a page explaining how to get your number off someone else's account.

TCPA violation? (2, Informative)

russ-smith (126998) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918370)

If the called party is charged for the call they may have run afoul of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (47 USC 227 and the rules under 47 CFR 64.1200). If so you can sue them for up to $1,500 for each "call" just like a junk fax.

My problem is just the opposite (1)

nicedream (4923) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918373)

I signed up for yahoo news alerts and baseball scores for my favorite team [phillies.com] . They are rarely delivered (perhaps 1 or 2 days out of a month) even though text messages from all my friends never have any problems getting through.

Strangely enough, I get yahoo horoscopes and weather forecasts at the EXACT same time EVERY day. I wish they would get their act together, but it's a free service so I can't really complain much.

In Soviet Russia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918377)

Unwanted Text Messages Kill You!

Thats Yahoo. (4, Interesting)

dnoyeb (547705) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918378)

That is complete BS but the same thing happened to me with email.

This is the problem.

1. Sign up for yahoo email.
2. Register an alternate email address of someone you don't like.
3. sign up the alternate address for all kinds of junk.

Their is no way they can cancel it. Yahoo will do what they always do when you email them for help, flush it down the toilet, or threaten YOU for spamming them...

Pre-spammed accounts... (2)

writermike (57327) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918384)

I agree with some of the other posts here. You'll likely have to take this up with the phone service provider, NOT Yahoo!. I suppose if I just got the phone number, I'd demand a new one. I realize that this isn't always possible or ideal, but it's the sure way to get away from it all.

I've seen similar things happen to folks who sign up with larger ISPs. Recently one signed up with RCN, got an "available" e-mail address, connected for the first time only to find 50+ spams inside from various companies.

I think we're doomed to see this more and more as ISPs/phoneservice providers run out of name/numberspace. Recycling will happen. What can the providers do if the e-mail/phonemail address is out there already? Even if they close the number of X number of months, the spammers will still pump out ads at the address.

BotSequitur V1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4918385)

@Comment

Use the PHONE. Speak with a PERSON. (4, Informative)

bluephone (200451) | more than 11 years ago | (#4918398)

In this age of email, web forms, IM, SMS, VoiceMail, yada yada yada, we overlook the simple telephone. I had a problem with Yahoo a few years ago, and after goign round robin with the electronic options, I picked up the phone, called teir corporate offices, and didn't stop uotil I got to someone who helped me get the problem straightened out. It took 2 days to get it done that way, versus a month of web-based frustration.

1-408-731-3300

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