Option to disable short codes

Add an option to disable short codes along with text messaging.

I have text messaging disabled on my device through "Device Settings". Over the last three days I have "received" 11 texts from the same short code (reported by Ting, but never reached my device), causing a $3 increase in my bill. In the past, I was simply credited the difference and told to unsubscribe from the spam short codes messages. This process is inefficient and inconvenient for both Ting and its customers.

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4 comments
  • Hey Tim, 

    If you're on CDMA, you can block them at the network level by sending 'block [number]' to 9999. You can just text 'help' to 9999 if you want to see all the commands. 

    You said text messaging is disabled on the device -- have you also attempted to disable it in your Ting dashboard?

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  • My devices are on GSM.

    Yes, by "disabled on the device" I meant I have it disabled for my device through the "Device Settings" page.

    White list and black lists are useful if the service is used, but that's not what I am looking for here. I want the option to disable messaging entirely.

    I've had no luck searching why short codes could not be disabled, and have a hard time believing it since it's still SMS. (But I deal with block devices, not network devices, so I don't know what I'm looking for.)

    I'd have no problem closing this as won't fix if a more technical reason could be given as to why disabling messaging does not stop short codes, and why short codes cannot be disabled (e.g., in the Text Messaging FAQ). But as a feature, I want to disable short codes when I disable messaging.

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  • Thanks for the clarification Tim, 

    In this case, shortcodes come through even when SMS is turned off because as opposed to regular SMS these codes are used for services like 2FA and alerts that aren't blocked by our network switch. This is understandably annoying if you have no use for these alerts. To block shortcodes on GSM you'll need to unsubscribe by sending the message "STOP" in an SMS back to the shortcode to be blocked. Please let us know if that works and if not we'll need to determine the exact shortcode you're receiving in order to figure out an alternative. 

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  • This has been going on for at least 3 years. T-mobile uses short codes, but Ting doesn't. I believe the short codes are sent to our phones from T- mobile which I believe are blocked by Ting. This is why the messages never get through but we're still billed for them.

    Sending a STOP message just tells the server that the account is active which results in more short codes being sent. Every single month I get billed for short codes and have to call customer support and ask for a credit which they provide. It's kind of a pain in the a** but it works.

    Ting still acts like they have never heard of the problem every time I call, but apparently it's been going on for a long time.

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