Phone-Paid Services Authority

The Phone-Paid Services Authority is the UK regulator for content, goods and services charged to a phone bill.

Phone-paid services are the goods and services that you can buy by charging the cost to your phone bill or pre-pay account. They include directory enquiries, voting on TV talent shows, donating to charity by text, joke lines, chat lines, games or downloading apps on your mobile phone. They are referred to as premium rate services in law.

UK regulation is open, fair and robust, underpinned by a Code of Practice approved by OFCOM.

Ofcom. As the telecoms, internet and payments sectors continue to grow globally at an unprecedented rate, the Phone-paid Services Authority takes action to safeguard consumers and help cutting-edge providers of digital content and services to thrive.

Their vision is a healthy and innovative market in which consumers can charge content, goods and services to their phone bill with confidence.

The Mission of the Phone Pre-Paid Services Authority

To protect consumers from harm in the market, including where necessary through robust enforcement of our Code of Practice and to further their interests through encouraging competition, innovation and growth in the market.

They seek to do this through:

  • Providing clarity about the market for content, goods and services charged to a phone bill
  • Applying an outcomes-based Code of Practice
  • Delivering a balanced approach to regulation
  • Working in partnership with Government and other regulators
  • Delivering high standards of organisational support.

What are Phone-Paid Services and How Do They Charge You?

Phone-paid services is a generic name for goods and services that you purchase and are charged to your telephone bill or pay-as-you-go credit. Here are some examples of phone-paid services:-

  • Quizzes and competitions
  • Voting (e.g. X-Factor, Britain’s Got Talent, Strictly Come Dancing)
  • Charity donations (one-off donations or subscriptions)
  • Digital content (e.g. apps, in-app purchases, digital media,
  • one-off purchases or subscriptions)
  • Directory enquiries (e.g. 118 numbers)
  • Adult services (e.g. chat, dating)
  • Gambling

The job of the Phone Pre-Paid Services Authority is to look after the industry and ensure people are not cheated. But it’s everyone’s responsibility to behave sensibly and that includes not downloading unsafe APPS, checking all payments and not handing over confidential information to unknown people or APPS.

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