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Nigeria Ranks 9th on Global Spam Calls

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chike onwuegbuchi

Nigeria has been ranked ninth in the world for spam calls, according Truecaller Insight report released earlier this week, in spite of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) efforts to address spam calls and unsolicited short message service (SMS).

Truecaller Insights Top 20 Countries Affected by Spam Calls in 2017" report, showed Nigeria, was in ninth place when it comes to the number of spam calls users get each month.

The country with the highest number of spam calls is India, where consumers receive an average of 22.6 spam calls a month. Next is the US and Brazil, both with an average of 20.7 calls per month, followed by Chile with 17.4 and then South Africa with an average of 15 while Nigeria has average of 10.4 calls per month.

The spam filtering mobile app said annoying and unwanted spam calls are on the rise around the globe and in some large markets the average Truecaller user receives more than 20 spam calls each month.

The data used in the report was aggregated anonymously from incoming calls that either were marked as spam by users or automatically flagged by Truecaller during the period of 1 January to 31 May 2017. During this time, Truecaller users received over 5.5 billion spam calls.

For Nigeria, telcos are the biggest spammers. The report found 61% of reported spam calls are from telecoms operators cold calling people and trying to upsell data plans or push promotional offers to the public at large. In SA, operators make up 8% of spam calls.

Deolu Ogunbanjo, president, National Association of Telecommunications Subscribers (NATCOMMS) said that Nigeria’s position in the global spam calls is unaccepted to subscribers especially now that Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) is stepping up campaign against unsolicited text messages and calls.

“What this report has shown supports my view that NCC should bite and not bark in its efforts to address unsolicited SMS and calls. There should be sanction attached to operators that flaws this directive after a subscriber has sent Stop to the short code 2442,” he said.

Lanre Ajayi, managing director, Pinet Informatics, expressed reservation of the report as it relates to Nigeria, arguing that he has not received spam calls for a while now, noting that NCC should step up its DND campaign by conducting its own report on the level of compliance by both operators and subscriber as a way of measuring the effectiveness of its regulation.

“If NCC has conducted such report already they should make it public. We can’t continue to rely on global agencies to tell us what is happening in our own environment,” he added.

It would be recalled that NCC has introduced the Do Not Disturb (DND) facility where consumers are urged to activate the facility by texting 2442. There is also the 622 number for the NCC customer toll free complaint line. NCC intends to increase the awareness level and equally the activation level via nationwide awareness creation.”
 
Mr. Sunday Dare, Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management, disclosed that as at April this year 5.5million subscribers have activated Do-Not- Disturb code.

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