Following a Direction to the telecommunications service providers in the country, the operators, with effect from July 1, 2016, activated the DO NOT DISTURB facility which gives subscribers the freedom to choose what messages to receive from the various networks. With this Direction the operators have been mandated to dedicate a common Short Code (2442) which will enable subscribers take informed decisions.
Mr. Tony Ojobo, Director of Public Affairs, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), in a statement, said this action was taken in order to protect subscribers from the nuisance of unsolicited texts, and therefore a direct regulatory response to the yearnings of the subscribers. By this action, he explained, the Commission has invoked a regulatory provision which had hitherto been overlooked by the operators.
Taking cognizance of the broad range of services which include: Banking/Insurance/ Financial Products, Real Estate, Education, Health, Consumer Goods and Automobiles, Communication/ Broadcasting/ Entertainment/ IT, Tourism and leisure, Sports, Religion(Christianity, Islam, others), the Commission directed the operators to give the necessary instructions and clarifications that will enable subscribers subscribe to a particular service/services /none at all. In fact, a Full DND which is SMS “STOP” to 2442 does not allow the subscriber to receive any unsolicited message from the operators at all.
Below are the various options;
- “SMS 1” for receiving SMS relating to Banking? Insurance/ Financial products to 2442
- “SMS 2” for receiving |SMS relating to real Estate to 2442
- “SMS 3” for receiving SMS relating to Education to 2442
- “SMS 4” for receiving SMS relating to Health to 2442
- “SMS 5” for receiving SMS relating to Consumer goods and Automobiles to 2442”
- “SMS 6” for receiving SMS relating to Communication/ Broadcasting Entertainment/IT to 2442
- “SMS 7” for receiving SMS relating to Tourism and leisure to 2442
- “SMS 8” for receiving SMS relating to Sports to 2442
- “SMS 9” for receiving SMS relating to Religion to 2442
Mr. Tony Ojobo highlighted that the decision of the Commission does not affect personal messages or person to person messages which are private communication by individuals. He urged the operators to comply immediately with the Direction issued by the Commission and never again harass subscribers with unwanted messages.