A California firm accused of cell phone text spamming has agreed to pay $500,000 and reform its business practices, state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said.
According to the attorney general, Game Theory sent texts claiming to be from someone with a secret crush on the recipient. Anyone who tried to see who sent the message would unknowingly agree to pay $9.99 a month to get dating tips texted to their phone.
The California company also sent out unsolicited texts reading “someone thinks you’re hot,” “you have one unread message” and “someone sent you a weird diet tip that works,” and offered a photo-manipulation app. Responses to any of the spam texts would automatically sign unsuspecting users to a $9.99-a-month texting service.
Game Theory sent spam texts to some 150,000 New Yorkers. Charges were posted on users’ cell phone bills in less than obvious ways so that it took many of the unsuspecting users months to detect the extra charge. The company is now out of the texting business, Schneiderman said.
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