Did you receive a text from short code 99955 telling you that you are signed up for Bumbalee? Let’s take a look at Bumbalee and what these messages are all about.
This service, which is called Bumbalee, is the most expensive of these so-called “premium” services we’ve seen, and appears to only be available to those “lucky” consumers in Canada. Their FAQ states:
When you are subscribed to Bumbalee you will be charged CDN $3 per message, 4 messages per week (with a max. of $40 a month)
As with most of these overpriced services, there are many reports of people who insist they neither subscribed to, nor confirmed, such a service. This is often the case with these types cell phone subscription services, which make it far too easy to accidentally subscribe even by merely clicking an ad from your smart phone. In fact, it could be argued that nearly all “premium” text messaging services exist to charge exorbitant prices for rather useless, unwanted text messages.
The issues at hand are how people are claiming to be subscribed without their permission, and if 16 text messages a week is worth $40. And just what are these text messages? Again, according to the Bumbalee FAQ:
Every other day you will receive a question on your mobile phone, you can answer this question by sending in the answer to 99955.
The website states that they give away prizes, apparently once per month, but it doesn’t specify what prize was awarded.
Information about Bumbalee
A whois lookup tells us that EventTexter.com was created on March 30, 2011. The registration information is:
owner-organization: Your Product In Mind
owner-street: Max Euwelaan 55
owner-phone: +31 10 2409650
From the above whois info, this website is owned and operated by a company in the Netherlands.
Should you wish to contact Bumbalee, they do list a couple of different contacts:
Mobile Minded B.V.
6825 MC Arnhem
Most cell phone carriers have an option which will allow you to block such purchases as these. If you find yourself “accidentally” subscribed to such a service, you may wish to call your carrier, or log onto the website, and investigate purchase blocking.
You can try to respond with “STOP” to short code 99955, but even if they honor this request, it will only stop future charges. In this case it’s advisable to call your cell carrier and ask for the charges to be reversed, and ask that they block all such “premium” sms services.
If you’ve had any any experience with Bumbalee, please leave us a comment below.
Filed under: Who Called Me?