socializing media A post with millions of views claims that T-Mobile has “secretly made an update.” [terms of service] From January 1, 2024, we will include fines for content we do not agree with. According to the post, text messages that are used for malicious activities such as social engineering or phishing, or contain content that is considered illegal or inappropriate, such as sex, hate, alcohol, firearms, or tobacco. T-Mobile will impose a fine.
“So they basically said that if you send a text message that includes sexual talk, hate speech, talk about alcohol, firearms, tobacco, etc., T-Mobile will fine you $500 for each violation.” There is,” one post claims.
Multiple VERIFY readers, including Missy, asked if this was true.
Does T-Mobile fine its regular customers for the content of their text messages?
source of information
No, T-Mobile does not impose fines on regular customers for the content of their text messages. The company has updated its policies to allow it to fine third-party vendors that use its network for phishing, social engineering, and other illegal activities.
what we found
As of January 1, 2024, T-Mobile will update its policies to allow for fines for third-party commercial vendors who send text messages containing illegal or unauthorized content over the T-Mobile network. became. This policy update does not affect regular customers, and T-Mobile currently does not have a policy to fine customers for the content of their text messages.
“This change only affects third-party messaging vendors who send commercial mass messaging campaigns for other companies. We do not and cannot censor private texts. All we have is a filter that protects our customers from unwanted texts that may contain fraudulent or malicious activity such as malware or phishing,” T-Mobile said in a statement to VERIFY.
Third-party vendors, such as Bandwidth and Vonage, contract with T-Mobile on behalf of their clients to send mass messaging campaigns over mobile phone networks. Text messages sent by these vendors may include billing, political, or marketing messages. For example, the Shop may work with third-party vendors to send mass marketing text messages about new promotions. It’s the third-party vendor’s job to ensure that a shop’s messages comply with T-Mobile’s Code of Conduct, which provides information about prohibited activities.
“Vendors may be subject to fines if the content they are submitting does not meet the standards in our Code of Conduct, which are designed to protect consumers from illegal or unlawful content and comply with federal and state laws. ,” T-Mobile said.
The fine amounts in effect as of January 1 apply to each violation issued. Vonage says its fees include $2,000 for phishing, smishing, and social engineering, $1,000 for illegal content, and other content deemed illegal or inappropriate, including sex, hate, alcohol, firearms, and tobacco. That includes $500.
T-Mobile’s customer terms include a list of prohibited activities, including “spamming or sending unsolicited, unsolicited, or other bulk automated communications.”
But just because T-Mobile doesn’t impose fines on regular customers doesn’t mean there aren’t penalties for participating in illegal activities via text messages. For example, threatening to harm someone via text message is considered a federal interstate commerce crime, and those text messages can be used in court, according to the Wiseman Law Firm.