22 May 2011

The cost of a stolen mobile phone

From a story at The Telegraph:
A newly-wed couple recently found an unexpected wedding gift when they returned from their Caribbean honeymoon: an £8,200 phone bill from Vodafone. Like many people, they had assumed that if their mobile phone was used fraudulently they would not be liable for the bill. But this is not the case.

Consumer protection is far more lax than that for lost or stolen bank cards. Here, banks are obliged to cover costs incurred as a result of fraud; the maximum that consumers pay is capped at £50, although in reality few people pay even this...

As this case shows, these costs can quickly snowball, not least because far more of us now have "smartphones" that allow us to surf the internet and download video, songs and emails. Downloading abroad incurs "data-roaming" charges that can be far higher than the cost of an ordinary call or text. While downloading one gigabyte on a smartphone in Britain can cost as little as £7.50 a month, the equivalent use abroad could cost several thousand pounds.

Figures from Which? show that using the internet on your mobile overseas can be as much as 1,000 times more costly than at home.
More at the link.

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