Kilkenny company fined €5,000 for breaches of legislation covering premium service rates

Mary Cody

Reporter:

Mary Cody

Kilkenny company fined €5,000 for breaches of legislation covering premium service rates

Kilkenny Courthouse

A Kilkenny-registered company has been fined €5,000 after it pleaded guilty to two breaches of legislation covering premium service rates.

Zamano Solutions Limited pleaded guilty to two offences under Section 13 of the Communications Regulation (Premium Rate Services and Electronic Communications Infrastructure) Act 2010.

Miriam Kilraine, Compliance Operations Manager with the Commission for Communications Regulations (ComReg) gave evidence at Kilkenny District Court.

Ms Kilraine outlined how the charges related to two people who were charged for receiving text messages with links to adult content, which they had not signed up to or consented to.

Ms Kilraine gave evidence that in August 2019 one witness was in the park with her husband and her young son when her phone started beeping. She got six texts with links to adult content,” Ms Kilraine said adding that the witness worked for ComReg and was aware of how premium services rates worked and that the witness had done nothing to get access to this service, inadvertently or otherwise.

The witness was later charged €15 for the texts and contacted Zamano requesting proof that she had consented to the service.

The second charge related to an incident in March 2020 when a second witness received text messages a link to adult content when sitting in his car in a drive thru. He had previously worked for Comreg and was aware that he could be charged for the texts. He contacted Zamano and received an automated response that the other witness also received that he had accessed it through clicking on a banner. He also asked for proof of consent.

Neither witness had consented to the charged text messages.

Solicitor Chris Hogan acting for Zamano said that the injured parties were refunded and that the company ceased to operate the App Mob since August.

The company now provides text services to charities and some financial institutions, Mr Hogan said.

Judge Geraldine Carthy imposed a fine of €2,500 in relation to each charge.