SMS sender scheme set for Dec 28

The Office of the Communications Authority (OFCA) today announced that the SMS Sender Registration Scheme will be launched on December 28 to help members of the public verify SMS senders’ identities and beware of scams.


The scheme will first be implemented in the telecommunications sector and all registered senders will use registered SMS sender IDs with the prefix “#” to send SMS messages to local subscribers of mobile services. 


Members of the public may visit OFCA's website to check the list of the first batch of telecommunications service providers participating in the scheme.


OFCA explained that the scheme is aimed at helping citizens identify registered SMS senders to stop fraudsters from sending scam SMS messages masquerading as other companies or organisations.


SMS messages with sender IDs containing "#" but not sent by registered senders will be blocked by the telecommunications networks. Subscribers of mobile services do not need to apply for the service, install any mobile apps or change their handset settings.


However, the scheme is not applicable to SMS messages in which the receiver is expected to reply to the sender via phone numbers, OFCA noted.


Members of the public are reminded to stay highly vigilant when receiving SMS messages from unknown senders. They must not disclose to unidentified senders any personal information, bank account numbers or credit card details, transfer money or access any hyperlink in the SMS messages.


When in doubt, report to Police immediately.


OFCA will also continue to work with Police and the telecommunications sector to enhance education and publicity against fraud.

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