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Gele Bedrijvengids’ premium rate number in use again: no evidence of misuse

On 10 June 2009 OPTA arranged for the 0900 number of the Gele Bedrijvengids, a database for businesses and part of Ucalegon Ltd., to be shut down following suspicions of premium rate misuse. OPTA received reports that the 0900 number was used for offering non-existent services. Callers complained to OPTA they were never called back by Gele Bedrijvengids after calling 0900 400 2050 and leaving their telephone number. Further investigations, however, showed no evidence of any misuse. Therefore as of today the number is in use again.
When do we speak of number misuse?
If OPTA suspects a premium rate number has been misused, the regulator may take action to have that number shut down immediately in order to protect consumers from this premium rate scam. Premium rate misuse entails:
- Using the premium rate number for non-existent services;
- Keeping callers on hold for more than 10 minutes;
- Disconnecting the line without having offered any service;
- Misinforming or failing to inform the caller about the call rate upon connection.
Once a premium rate number has been shut down OPTA has eight weeks to prove whether or not the complaints are justified. In the case of the Gele Bedrijvengids OPTA has not been able to establish any misuse based on the reports received. Any stakeholder may lodge an objection against OPTA’s decision.