Telecom regulator issues order to free you from spam, unregistered telemarketers to pay extra

India’s telecom regulator has said that concessional sms packs provided by operators to bulk sms users are being misused by unregistered telemarketers to spam consumers and that a price restraint has been placed on sending more than 100 sms per day at a concession.

Subscribers can send more than 100 sms’ but it will be charged at 50 paisa per sms, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has said. Operators have 15 days to implement the order.

The authority has also asked service providers to install systems that can make sure that no more than 200 SMSs with similar signature, characters or strings can be sent from any source or number. This does not apply to registered telemarketers.

You can also complain about an unsolicited message by forwarding the message to 1909 after adding your phone number and date of message. Access providers have also been asked to install web based complaint registering system and a dedicted e-mail to address such complaints.

In August, the authority had drafted “The Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference (Tenth Amendment) Regulations 2012,” to fine tune its earlier approach to spam. The 100 sms limit was first imposed in September 2011.

Copy of the order here (pdf)