Posts Tagged ‘Vodafone’

A bug with O2 text messaging

August 11th, 2012 No comments

I’ve recently seen a bug with text messaging that could cause trouble for someone or even be used for fraudulent purposes.

A colleague (on Orange) sent a picture message to myself (on Vodafone) and another colleague (on O2). He sent it as one message with two recipients rather than two separate messages. Nothing wrong there.

In later conversation, the first colleague mentioned what I had said in reply to his picture. What reply? I asked. He then showed me a message on his Nokia 6310 that clearly appeared to have come from my number. I had not sent this message and I could prove it by showing him my itemised bill on the Vodafone website. Looking at the style of the message it looked like it had come from the second recipient which it turned out was the case.

Despite having a Nokia smartphone, this second recipient on O2 has a corporate restriction on receiving picture messages directly on the phone and instead receives a message telling him to visit the O2 website to view the picture. When he did this he sent a reply via this O2 website. Because I had been the first recipient on the original message, the O2 website falsely inserted my number as the sender.

Fortunately, our relationship is good enough to realise who had really sent the message but depending on the content of the message this could easily have caused an argument or bad feeling. This could also be used for fraudulent purposes?

How is it possible for O2 to spoof the sender details?

Wanted: a proper PAYG data plan

April 23rd, 2011 No comments

When I bought my iPad I almost chose a WiFi only version, but decided on a WiFi/3G version for the odd occasions when it would be used away from a WiFi connection. I had no real idea how much data I would be using. My average monthly data usage on the iPhone rarely exceeded 200MB. I did consider getting a GiffGaff SIM but they consider usage in an iPad to be ‘tethering’ (a strange interpretation of the word) and anyone mentioning tethering and iPad in a tweet leaves themselves open to GiffGaff’s Gestapo-like followers. GiffGaff seem to be scared of massive data usage on the iPad, something you’ll shortly see is far from the truth.

Unfortunately, none of the UK mobile telcos offers a proper PAYG data plan that works in the same way as a phone plan; on a PAYG phone plan your credit never expires (as long as you make a call once in a while, usually a month), not so with data plans.

I plumped instead for the best plan on offer at the time which was Three’s 3GB for £20. Unfortunately this data allowance expires after 3 months, but at under £7/month for a connection it was a start. Once I did start using my iPad, i found that my average monthly cellular data usage on iPad turns out to be around 40-50MB, a fraction of my iPhone usage, making a mockery of GiffGaff’s argument for allowing data usage on an iPhone but not the iPad.

I then came to renew the Three data plan but found that you cannot add another three months, but have to pay £10 for 1GB that lasts a month. At my usage rate this is a complete waste. It would be cheaper to go and buy another SIM for three months! It also means that these plans are not ‘pay as you go’ at all; since the data allowance only lasts a month they are effectively 30-day monthly contracts.

Monthly contracts are not suitable, paying for a plan that would largely go unused and also run the risk of some rogue app taking me over my monthly allowance and into more expensive data costs. A PAYG allowance is self limiting as it would simply run out.

So come on, Vodafone, O2, Three, T-Mobile, Orange, GiffGaff. Let’s have a real PAYG data plan where I can buy say 1GB of data top-up that never expires, just like my PAYG phone credit. I know I am not alone in wanting such a plan.

UPDATE: January 2012

GiffGaff are now allowing use of their SIMS in iPads. Data Costs 20p/day (for first 20MB) then 20p/MB for data used on top during that day – Perfect for the amount of data I use on the iPad. Credit does not expire. If I know I’m going to be using a lot more data, I can buy a data goody bag with my credit.

You can get a free GiffGaff SIM here.

More Vodafone Incompetence

September 14th, 2005 No comments

Apparently, Vodafone have sent my PAC code (Number Portability Authorisation Code) to my old address. I only moved 2 and a half years ago!

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Vodafone try to tempt me back

September 9th, 2005 No comments

Well, surprise, surprise, Vodafone rang me this afternoon to ask why I was leaving and could they persuade me otherwise.

I filled them in on the lack of security on their online billing website, and the fact that Vodafone customer services were not taking the matter seriously.

They offered to halve my rental for six months and upgrade my phone for free. Well since the first part only represents a saving of 30 quid, and an upgraded phone would have Vodafone’s butchered operating system, I didn’t think that was much of an offer.

I declined, saying that the website was still non-secure and besides, I had already set in motion my move to another provider.

Vodafone Customer Service

September 9th, 2005 No comments

Further to my problems with Vodafone customer Service (see previous posts), they finally accepted they were giving me false information:

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Vodafone UK non-secure update

September 3rd, 2005 No comments

Further to my last post, I have checked and can confirm that a straw poll of three of Vodafone’s other services in Australia, Germany and Hungary, all still use secure connections for connection to ‘My Vodafone’.

Vodafone’s On-line billing goes non-secure

August 31st, 2005 No comments

Vodafone UK have redesigned their on-line billing interface (about time too) but they have either forgotten or decided to omit security in their planning. The new pages are all accessed over non-secure links.

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