Beware of Singtel’s unfair offer “forced” upon you via SMS


I thought it’s always safe to delete those <ADV> SMSes without reading them… until I received this unpleasant surprise from Singtel:

“<Singtel ADV>U have been selected to enjoy 30 days FREE trial for Colour-Me-Tones. SingTel’s ‘Friends’ will replace your standard connecting tone on 10 Dec. To opt out of trial, SMS ‘NO’ to 741490 by 09 Dec. $4.28/mth applies after the free 30days trial…”

My gosh. Since when did Singtel do such auto inclusions? They purportedly give you a free “trial”, and WITHOUT your express consent, start charging you later.

I couldn’t believe it’s from Singtel, the largest listed company in SGX by market capitalization. But alas, it is from them. I called 1626 and confirmed it with the apologetic customer service officer.

Granted, $4.28/mth is not a big sum. But is it fair to do business this way? How many unsuspecting customers, such as this and this, have fallen into this trap?

Moreover, do you want your bosses to hear cute connecting tones when they call you?

And I shudder to think how many such “trials” I have been included in. Without me knowing.

Singtel must stop this nonsense.


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  1. now that people will read those adverts (thanks to singtel), i’m sure there’ll be scammers in future who scare you into responding to their sms, and then bill you for using their ‘value added service’…

  2. I never read those adv and immediately delete hmm… and actually i wonder if we can opt out the whole entire adv. They are spam >.

  3. I guess the complaints worked or something. The version I received was:

    Greet your callers with your favourite songs. Colour-Me-Tones allows u to replace the standard connecting tone with a song of your choice @ only $4.28/mth. Reply “Y” now to enjoy FREE 1st 30 days!

    @cleodux: I’ve just replied your question. The number is 741520.

  4. You’re absolutely right. I called back my no. and found out that the ringtone has changed to a x’mas tone. Its very unprofessional of ST to conduct such unprincipled business practices. Pretty disappointed with ST on this and will probably jump ship to SH once contract ends next yr.

  5. Do something about this and lodge a complaint with the IDA by emailing the details to [email protected] If SingTel is doing what you say they are then it’s clearly a violation of the new Premium Rate Services code of practice (

    Several smaller premium SMS providers have been fined already due to breaches – the IDA has some teeth here!

  6. Pingback: SingTel Violated IDA Code and Destroyed My Trust | - Your Salary in Singapore

  7. hey! me too! i ignored that stupid ad sms and deleted it without reading it.

    i saw my bill. And i realised i was charged 3 months for that stupid color me tones!

  8. I tried replying with UNSUB at least THREE times and they still keep smsing me. That’s 15cents gone. Plus I have to pay for each incoming and outgoing SMS, and they KEEP SPAMMING ME WITH ADS.

    Could someone go to the press about this?

  9. I just received an sms from number “+741520”. message saying ‘Thanks for everything’.

    Weird. What da heck man.

  10. Well, this is an unfair tactic against the consumers. There is a Competition Commission created under the Competition Act which is a law passed to act against any unfair business practices that only favors the companies against the consumers or other competing companies.

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