Losing airtime?

If you have an unusually high phone bill, or your air time is disappearing

  • Establish exactly what is causing the problem, it could be:
    1. Unexpected data charges (apps running in the background)
    2. WASP services (subscription services)
    3. Sending lots of SMSes to premium-rated numbers
    4. Airtime transfers
    5. USSD usage (example, when the user dials *120*123# to enter competitions)
  • Check your SMS history to see if you have messages welcoming you to a subscription service, or reminding you about a service you are subscribed to.
  • Contact your mobile service provider if you need assistance in determining what you are being billed for.

Questions you should ask your mobile operator when you contact them

  • What services am I being charged for?
    • Are those WASP services, data services, or something else?
  • Is there a company billing me for subscription services?
    • What is the name of the company or companies billing me?
    • Do you have a phone number for that company?
    • Can you cancel the subscription services for me?

If data charges are the problem

  • Make sure you switch off data services on your phone that you don’t need. Some applications make use of mobile data, even if they are only running in the background. [MyBroadband article]
  • If you are not sure how to do this, visit your closest mobile phone store, and ask them to help you turn off applications which use data in the background.

If WASP services are the problem

  • Ask your mobile operator to stop the services which are being billed.
  • Use the tools provided by your network to cancel all subscription services.
    • Mobile operators allow users to manage content subscriptions through SMS or USSD codes:
  • Cell C
    • Use the USSD string *133*1# to block all existing and future content billing.
  • MTN
    • MTN
    • Check/manage subscription services by dialling *141*5#
      • Dial *141*5#
      • Select option 2 (Content Services)
      • Select option 1 (Manage Content Services to view or cancel subscriptions)
      • Select option 2 (Manage Premium Rated Services to set spend limits for PRS or opt out of PRS marketing)
    • Block PRS charges by dialling *155#
      • Dial *155#
      • Select option 99 (more)
      • Select option 4 (Block/Unblock future charges)
      • Select option 2 (Premium-rated services)
    • Block PRS marketing by dialling *155#
      • Dial *155#
      • Select option 3 (Stop third party messages)
  • Telkom
    • Block all WASP subscriptions by enabling a setting in the Telkom app:
      • Log into the app and navigate to My Products > Manage > Protect Your Mobile Number, and set it to “On”.
      • To manage premium content subscriptions, navigate to My Products > Subscriptions > Content Services.
    • Alternatively, dial 180 and follow the prompts.
  • Vodacom
    • Send an SMS containing “STOP ALL” to 31050:
      • If you are subscribed to WASP services, you should receive the response indicating that your request to unsubscribe has been received. You should then receive messages confirming that you have been unsubscribed.
    • Alternatively, dial *135#, select “Next”, then “Services”, then “Content Services”. You will then be provided with three Options: “View and Stop Content Services”, “Stop All” and either “Block” or “Unblock”. Select “Stop All” and then repeat the process and select “Block”. If you see “Unblock” instead of “Block” as an option, you have already blocked subscription services.
    • To unsubscribe from Vodafone Live services, dial *117#, select “Next” and then “Unsubscribe”.
    • You can also use the Vodacom App to check for subscription services. Open the App, select “More” at the bottom right, and then select “Content Services”. You will see a list of your active subscriptions or “You’re not subscribed to any content services”. To block your number, use the button at the bottom of the screen which says “Block content services”. If you have already activated a block, this will instead say “Unblock content services”.
  • If your mobile operator is unable to assist you, contact WASPA.

If your phone is stolen or lost

  • Report a stolen or lost phone to your service provider as soon as possible, so that your SIM can be deactivated.
  • Phone thieves often use stolen phones to transfer airtime or enter airtime competitions.