Nuisance calls & spam texts
If you’re receiving unwanted calls or texts, whether they’re nuisance calls or spam, here’s some tips on what you can do next.
Flubot malware scam text messages
The Flubot scam infects Android phones across all networks, and is sent via text message.
A message is sent to the user, pretending to be from a number of services, and it’ll contain a link asking the user to click to install an app. If the user installs the app, the malware then takes over the phone and sends more of these text messages to the user’s contacts.
If you get a suspicious text and click on the link, here’s what to do next:
- Forward the text message to 7726
- Remove the suspicious malware from your phone. You can do this by activating Google Play Protect – this checks for harmful malware and may allow you to remove it from your device
- If trying to remove the malware with Google Play Protect doesn’t work, then you might need to do a factory reset. Just so you know, when you do a reset, this will erase data like photos, apps and texts from your phone
- Be careful when doing your reset not to back up your data, as this will also back up the malware
Spam calls and texts
Spam texts are unsolicited, non-chargeable messages used as advertising by some companies. They usually include a premium rate number to call or a short code to text. If you receive one of these texts, please don’t respond unless you’re sure it’s genuine.
If you think the text is spam:
- Text CALL to 7726 for free and we’ll ask you for the number. We’ll report it to the Information Commissioner’s office (ICO) who’ll take action if they can
- You can also tell the premium rate number regulator PhonepayPlus about messages containing premium rate numbers and they’ll investigate
Unwanted marketing calls
The best way to stop unwanted marketing calls is to register with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) for free. This is the only official register, and once you’re on it, you should stop getting marketing calls within 28 days, unless you’ve asked a company to call or text you.
Unwanted marketing texts
Registering with the TPS won’t stop you from receiving marketing texts. To stop these texts, you can try and send an ‘opt out’ message to the company that’s texting you.
To check or change your marketing preferences or to stop receiving marketing messages from Tesco Mobile, please go to our Preference Centre. Alternatively, call 282 free from your Tesco Mobile phone. Just so you know, by opting out you may not get to hear about our special offers in the future.
Dealing with nuisance calls and texts
To help you deal with nuisance calls, here are a few practical tips:
- Don’t say your name or number when you answer. Just say ‘hello’ and let the caller identify themselves first
- Don’t leave your name or contact number on your voicemail
- If someone asks you to confirm your number, ask them to say what number they want and then tell them whether they’re right or wrong
- If you keep getting nuisance calls, try putting your mobile down calmly and ignore it for a few minutes. Then end the call or switch your mobile off. This often puts off nuisance callers, especially when they realise they’re wasting time and money
The communications regulator Ofcom has more helpful advice on tackling nuisance calls.
Which? also has information on identifying the type of call and where to complain.
Scam calls or texts
If you think the calls or texts are a scam, please get in touch with Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and internet crime reporting centre.
Be aware of copycat services, particularly those that charge. A copycat service offers a similar or identical service to official bodies, but usually charges to process official documents such as passports or visas or make online applications that you could do yourself for free or much cheaper.
Threatening or abusive calls or texts
Malicious, abusive or threatening calls, whether from people you know or strangers, are a criminal offence. If the caller is making direct threats to you or your family and you believe those threats to be real and immediate, call 999 straightaway.
If you believe the threats are not immediate, then you should call your local police station on 101 from any landline or mobile.
When you talk to the police, you’ll need to give them all the information you have, including:
- The numbers that have contacted you
- What was said or sent
- Dates and times of calls and texts
- If you know the people doing this
The police can then decide what course of action to take against the offender(s).
If the phone numbers are being withheld, the police may advise you to contact us and we’ll arrange to trace the calls. We’ll then send this information to the police (and only the police) to help your case. You’ll need to give us:
- Your name and number
- A description of the calls or texts
- Dates and times you received them