Mobile phone operators warn over foreign numbers scam

Calls in some cases clear out a user’s credit or add large amounts to a monthly bill

Unknown foreign numbers: Phone users have been urged not to answer or call  unknown numbers with the prefix 00252. File photograph: Getty Images

Unknown foreign numbers: Phone users have been urged not to answer or call unknown numbers with the prefix 00252. File photograph: Getty Images

 

Mobile phone operators have again urged customers not to return phone calls originating from unknown foreign numbers, after some users reported being caught out in a money-making scam.

The calls, which are understood to have started in recent days, may clear out a user’s credit or add large amounts to a monthly bill.

Users have been urged not to answer or call unfamiliar numbers with the prefix 00252, apparently from Somalia.

The numbers some users reported calls from are +252 70100074 and +252 99612249.

The common scam is known as Wangiri fraud.

Torlach Denihan of the Irish Cellular Industry Association (ICIA), an alliance of mobile phone operators under the banner of the business organisation Ibec, issued a general warning that customers should not return calls to an unknown foreign number.

ICIA says that if the call is legitimate, the chances are that the caller would call you back or leave a voicemail.