robot calls on roaming

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While out of country on holiday, some robot calls were made to our phone and we were billed roaming fees.  Are we responsible to pay this?   How can we control this from happening.   We checked the "Who Called Me' index online and the robot is well documented.  We have since changed the phone's number.
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Allan Wellwood

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Posted 6 months ago

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Timo Tuokkola, Mobile Master

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The only way you would be charged would be if you answered the call. Calls that go to voicemail are not charged. Neither are incoming text messages.
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Allan Wellwood

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We didn't answer!  In fact, we were unaware of any activity on the phone (didn't use it at all while away) until I checked the bill to pay it.
How do I address this with Koodo
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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If you do not answer you wont be charged.  While you are roaming, I highly recommend against taking any calls from unknown callers.

Koodo also has the new Easy Roam feature where you can roam like home for $7/day in the US and $10/day internationally
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Allan Wellwood

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We didn't answer!  In fact, we were unaware of any activity on the phone (didn't use it at all while away) until I checked the bill to pay it.
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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Have you checked what the specific charges are for on your pdf ebill?
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Allan Wellwood

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How do I address this with Koodo?
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Dinh, Mobile Master

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You could call them through 611, or message through facebook.
I don't think the robocall triggered the charge but the easyroam. It somehow was triggered (data leak or something)
(Edited)
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Allan, Mobile Master

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Could you post a screenshot of page 3 of your pdf ebill where you see these extra charges? Just leave out any personal information.
(Edited)
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Allan Wellwood

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I'll get back to you . ..
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Bernard, Official Rep

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@Allan, for you the details are actually going to be page 5 of the pdf bill once downloaded. You will see a description that seems to suggest that messages were retrieved from your voicemail. Do you see them? What was these robocalls about? Do you have more details?  
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Allan Wellwood

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I really don't have more detail than to say that we were at sea, the phone was on airplane mode because we did not subscribe to roaming fees and we were incommunicado for the entire cruise as the ship's internet fees were too high!   So:  I can't prove anything except to say that we did not use the phone except as a camera for the entire time the charges are billed to us.  As for seeing anything on my bill?   I can't even retrieve my bill!  I have two phones  the one that caused us the problem had number 3051 as the last 4 digits.  This number has since been changed to 6202.   No other details are available to me online and I have no paper copies of my bill.
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Allan, Mobile Master

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Login to self serve, click view my bill then click download pdf ebill. Does this work for you?
(Edited)
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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Have you ever successfully logged into self serve before?
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Allan Wellwood

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Actually, it does work!   I had seen this bill before but for some reason I couldn't find it again until now.   Yes, I see page 5 of 8.   What am I supposed to look at or for?
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Allan Wellwood

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@ Dennis:   Yes, but not often!   I seem to have two of you folks helping me... Dennis and Allan.   Can you both see my posts?   If so, should I only reply to one of you?
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Allan, Mobile Master

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Pdf ebills just show more information about what the charges are for. I wanted you to check just to see if they came from somewhere else or you it helped you to remember making the calls, etc.
As for both of us answering, this is a public forum. You could have a 100 people messaging you. You can reply to anyone you want.
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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So does the charges on your detailed PDF ebill say it was for roaming minutes?  Are there any details on any of the pages regarding the details of the extra charges?

Allan and I just respond to what is said here.  Doesnt matter if it is addressed to anyone specific.  We are all here to help
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Allan Wellwood

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Then, thank you all.
Here's a line showing what is on my bill.  There are 11 such entries all the same except for the date and time.  If you need the column titles, please let me know.

Fri Nov 3 11:09 am   902 580-4001  MSG RTRVL TM  CALL FORWARD  1:00 - 7.00 - 7.00
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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Hi Allan,

This looks a little funny.  Only of our mobile masters has flagged one of our Koodo contacts to check this out
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David, Mobile Master

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Friday, November 3 at 11:09 am a call was placed to Koodo's voicemail system for Nova Scotia customers (902-580-4001) to retrieve a message, or a voice message was forwarded from the phone (i.e. declined rather than not answered). The record suggests someone checked for voice mails.

Since you have said the phone was not used at all, you may have to dig deeper, but it looks like Koodo was billed by the cruise operator for calls to check voicemail.

From Carnival Cruise Lines:
If my phone is left on and I do not use it, will I be charged?

In some cases, a phone that is left on, but not used, may incur charges. If a voice call is received but not answered, and the caller leaves a voicemail it is possible you will receive a charge for a voice call. If a text comes through and the phone is left on, you may be charged for a received text. Please note that smartphones (Blackberries, iPhones, Androids and other PDA devices) are constantly looking for data connections in order to perform updates and other synchronization steps. Therefore, it is possible that if you leave your PDA device on, you will incur data charges. Please contact your carrier for more information on data charges.

(Edited)
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Allan Wellwood

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So... If that is possible - and Carnival says it is, then it's potentially expensive to even carry a smartphone while cruising unless it is turned completely off!  So.... even if it's on airplane mode it is seeking data sites?
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Dinh, Mobile Master

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If you phone was on Airplane mode, the cellular network will be turned off with the bluetooth and wifi. However, Wifi and bluetooth can still be turned on later to connect to internet. That should not cause the charge from Koodo, though.

From the record, Was your phone turned on and not on the airplane mode at that time?
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Dinh, Mobile Master

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If you phone was on Airplane mode, the cellular network will be turned off with the bluetooth and wifi. However, Wifi and bluetooth can still be turned on later to connect to internet. That should not cause the charge from Koodo, though.

From the record, Was your phone turned on and not on the airplane mode at that time?
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Allan Wellwood

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I can only say that it was my intent to have the airplane mode on and I thought it was on because we had no use for the phones while aboard ship.  That said and for the record:  If I had shut down my sim by turning it off, would that also have disabled the receiving of messages to my mailbox?  The issue to remember here is that the messages went to my mailbox.
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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If your phone was completely off or if you you have taken out your sim or if your phone was on airplane mode for the entirety of the trip (never restarted the phone, etc) then you really shouldnt be charged anything.  If a call came it, it would have went directly to your voice messages
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Chris P, Official Rep

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Hi Allan! While you on the cruise did you at any point call into your Voice Mail from your phone or any other phone on the ship?

If not, did you at any moment try Call Forwarding to/from your number while on the cruise?

If you would prefer, we could continue this conversation in private via Facebook Messenger https://m.me/Koodo :)

If you decide to send us a Facebook message make sure to reference this page so you don't have to explain everything from the start :)

Chris
(Edited)
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Allan Wellwood

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Hi Chris,
I notice you are 'admin' instead of 'mobile master'  - does this make a difference?  I'll go to Facebook if it stops clutter here.  After this conversation is finished though - if we get a resolution as to what happened - I hope we can compose a short explanation for the next folks who have a similar problem. 
No.... I did not use or open the telephone part of the device any of the time we were out of Canada.  In fact, because I have one Koodo account but two phones on it, I had used my other phone to text Koodo to close my account on the evening of October 16th  as that was when we left Canada.  I didn't think about this second phone being anything other than an extension of my one Koodo account.  But....that's beside the point....  Somewhere something happened that my account was billed without my participation and without my knowledge.
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Chris P, Official Rep

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I work for Koodo and can get access to your account as long as I can authenticate you first.

There is a form I can have you fill out once you send us a private Facebook message :)

I completely agree, once we figure out the issue we can update the thread on what happened so that others can be aware. 
(Edited)
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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What do you mean by "i did not use or open the telephone part"?  Not opeing the phone app or using the phone app does not meat the phone did not connect to the Cruise ship network.  if the sim was removed or airplane mode turned on, then it would mean the network connection is turned off.

How did you text koodo to close your account?  I didnt know koodo had that option.
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Allan Wellwood

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We use our phones in Canada.   We knew we were going to the USA (before going aboard the ship).  We expected to use my computer aboard ship.  We used the phones as cameras only and they were disabled (airplane mode) AND Koodo had been informed to suspend the account (one account for 2 phones) before we left Canada.  That I was unaware a phone with a simm in it would try to contact the ship's telecommunications network.   As I see it (from the comments in this forum) a scammer tried to contact me multiple times and the message went to my voicemail which remained unchecked - in fact, it never even registered in my voicemail;  but somehow the calls were registered to my account.  The question is:  Why ?  If I didn't answer or otherwise know about the calls - why are they billed to me?

Does Koodo have a text option???  I don't know - it's a pretty difficult thing to contact them but they contact me often enough!   I get incoming text messages from them and I simply replied via one of those text messages.
(Edited)
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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So you only found out they were robot calls after you got back to Canada and checked your voicemail?

Those texts koodo sends are only for offers and notices and only work for specific replies. They are automated and limited. If you contacted a rep to put your phone on seasonal hold then that should be good enough. Texting koodo the day you left to would not have done anything as no person is monitoring those messages
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Chris P, Official Rep

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Hi Allan! Did you get a chance to send us a private Facebook message? I am afraid that no one will be able to give you a definitive answer on what happened without first accessing your account.
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Allan Wellwood

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Chris,
Thank you for your interest.  
I finally got through to Koodo today and spoke with their rep. 
In respect to SPAMMERs causing incoming ROAMING FEES, this is the technical situation as KOODO sees it:
If a person has a cell phone and it has the 'call forward' feature activated (even to voice mail - contrary to what some people in the forum think) and a call is made to the phone, it registers as a call in.  In the case of being out-of-country, it incurs NETWORK roaming fees. 
The only ways to avoid the fees are:  1/  Ensure  'CALL FORWARDING' is  OFF and that the phone is OFF - this way the call will die without a network connection being made;  2/ have the account SEASONALLY SUSPENDED although the company would prefer the subscriber to use Easy Roam (at $10/ 24 hr day).   If the person chooses to 'suspend' their service, it will cost them $15 / month and their monthly account fee WILL continue;  3/ CANCEL the account during the period of absence.   It does not cost to cancel the service and if the client applies online, they will still be entitled to pick-up the same account privileges for the same price at no extra cost;   If the person chooses to speak to a company rep there's a $2 service fee to reconnect. 
Please note: For an active account - EVEN IF THE SIM IS OUT OF THE PHONE, THE NETWORK IS STILL ACTIVE AND ANY FORWARDED CALLS WILL REGISTER NETWORK ROAMING FEES and they will show on the bill.  Cancellation is obviously the most 'money saving' method and the most fool-proof for someone who is not going to use the Koodo network while away.
Due to my situation (being on-board a cruise ship with the sim shut off), they were kind enough to reduce the unsolicited (spammer) call fees by 50% although the initial offer was only 20% until I asked to speak to a supervisor. 
I hope this information clarifies the matter for other users. 
Should I try to eliminate all the previous banter?
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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That doesn't sound exactly right. If the sim is out of the phone roaming charges cannot occur since the network won't know where u are.

If I am in Edmonton and I take my sim out or turn my phone off, any calls forwarded to voicemail is not roaming when I was in Vegas I had data off but text and calls on. I rejected calls and it went to voicemail without roaming. I have been on a flight to Asia and I took my sim out while on the plane and any calls forwarded to voicemail did not generate any roaming fees.

I highly suggest you follow. Chris' direction and send a private message to koodo's Facebook

Chris, can you see the notes from Allan's call to koodo? The rep who spoke to Allan may have been unclear or misinformed
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Rikkster Retskkir

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I agree with Dennis' point. The SIM card, by itself, has no geo-locating properties. When you insert a SIM card into your phone and power it on, the phones' IMEI number and the SIM card serial number is transmitted to the nearest cell tower(s). In turn, a carrier could determine approximate location.

In order to achieve this, a SIM card requires power. Small voltages anywhere from 1.8 to 5 volts, which it gets from your phone. Without power to the SIM card and as Dennis points out, the network will have no way of knowing where you or your device are. As such, you cannot be charged roaming fees.
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BobTheElectrician

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Whether we agree or not, there's more historical info on call forwarding while the owner is out-of-country. Most examples of $whoop$ are of forwarding to a US number. This case may be applicable or not.

Not defending anyone here, but a forwarded call has to be intercepted by the central before your cell is even referenced or else they would both ring, and any successful connection even to a third party voicemail is viewed as a succe$$ful call. According to some convoluted logic, roaming may also be involved since your handset is not busy and can still be used to make calls while one is also being forwarded. You are still being tracked while the phone is on, even if you are not answering. So the system probably sees a successful call received while you were in MX (~ roaming).

So be forwarned: turn off call forwarding before leaving your home zone.
(Edited)
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Chris P, Official Rep

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Hi Allan! I am happy to hear that you were able to get a supervisor to help you out.

I just wanted to take the time to clarify a few things:

Unconditional Call forwarding is actually done at the network level, therefore the physical location of the device will have no affect over the billing in any way. Note: Other Call Forwarding types (busy, not reachable) could still generate charges. The Pay-per-use call forwarding rate is $0.50 per minute however, a $3 add-on is available through Self-Serve.

Even though all calls placed to Voice Mail are technically call forwarded to one’s personal Voice Mail box, these calls are NOT subject to the call forwarding pay-per-use rates. Calls made to one's Voice Mail will however always use up airtime minutes.

Calls placed to one’s Voice Mail rarely show up on the invoice as Call Forwarding however, could happen depending on where the call is placed from. (ie: from a cruise ship)

Incoming calls received while roaming are only charged if the call is answered.

Our $15 Seasonal Hold plan actually replaces the current plan. The only thing left to pay in additional to the $15 monthly Seasonal Hold fee would be the Monthly Tab Charge. For more details about our Seasonal hold please visit: http://koo.do/2s22PXv

We never charge Customer Service fees for simply speaking with our customer service team. Customer Service fees are only applicable for changes that could be completed through Self-Serve. That being said, we do not have a $2 service fee to reconnect.

I hope this helps. 

Chris
(Edited)
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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So when someone calls me and it goes to voicemail, it counts against my airtime?
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Chris P, Official Rep

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Nice catch Dennis! I corrected it :)
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Allan Wellwood

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Thank you, Chris.   I take it the information you provide is "Koodo policy"?
If so, then I wonder why the calls were billed to my account - I don't have a full understanding of that yet!   To shorten up the research, I'll reiterate:   We were aboard a ship off Mexico;  the phone was shut off (to the best of my knowledge at the time - i.e., I had notified Koodo by text that I wished to suspend my account (I now realize this was insufficient process), I had turned off the sim but I had not disabled 'call-forwarding to voicemail';   no calls were received (no ringing, no voice-mail notices) while we were away and nothing on the notification icons (no little numbers showing calls missed?);  the first inkling of billing was when I checked my account on my return to Canada and acted to reactivate my account.  SO:  From what I understand you to say is that no calls should have come to my phone and I should have had no bill other than the 'flat rate' monthly bill because I sent no calls or data messages from my phone?

Allan.
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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If that is what happened, then I would have that same expectation Allan^^
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Chris P, Official Rep

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Unfortunately, I am unable to speak to your exact situation since your account was never authenticated through Facebook.

That being said, if no calls were made or received nor any data used or outgoing texts sent than nothing would have appeared on the invoice and you would have only been billed for the ‘flat rate’ monthly bill.
(Edited)
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Allan Wellwood

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Thanks, Chris.  I'll accept that.  I only came on Facebook to address this matter in the Koodo Facebook page.... I don't know much about authenticating myself! 
As I am on the Koodo Facebook page, then Koodo must have access to this commentary and since I spoke with a Koodo rep, there must be a record of my interaction?  Is there some way to take this conversation back to Koodo to ask them why the transactions are on my bill?
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Timo Tuokkola, Mobile Master

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He's asking you to send a private message to Koodo using facebook messenger. Since that is a private, one on one conversation, they will then be able to verify your identity using your pin code, or other identifying information, which they cannot do on a public forum such as this one or the general Facebook page. They will also be able to discuss account specific details on that platform, which they also cannot do here due to privacy regulations.
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Allan Wellwood

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Thank you.
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Dwayne_888

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I don't like the misinformation provided to Chris about call forwarding. The Koodo rep wasn't competent. You're never charged any fee when your number is call forwarded to a local number where it would be included in your price plan. 

I'm just going to through this out into the conversation. It may not apply. If I understand correctly, the OP was at sea, maybe on a cruise and an incoming call came in? When it comes to cruising, that's a completely different beast and any, say,Easy Roam plan won't cover you because while you're cruising/ While you're connected to the ship's cellular/satellite network different rules apply. It may be that even if the subscriber doesn't pick up the call, he will get dinged because he's accessing the cruiseship's network.
(Edited)
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Allan Wellwood

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Dwayne.... I appreciate your input - not that I like to hear it, but because it puts validates the information I gleaned from the Koodo rep (by phone).    So, now that we've gone full circle - do we go around again?
I have sent a message to Koodo asking them to acknowledge me on Facebook so I can get this matter settled.   I'm going to wait for that reply before I come back into this conversation again.
PS:  I'm the person with the complaint.
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Dwayne_888

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Be mindful that Koodo and Public Mobile customers pay less than Telus' premium customers, we're not going to get the same level of competence and service.

Level I FB or Twitter support have told me that they only handle basic CSR issues, not technical issues. Your issue might be beyond their scope. 
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Bernard, Official Rep

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I beg to differ...:-) We are the easyest telco brand to deal within Canada. Looking at broad range of brands we came 5th (Amazon being #1) but beat Netflix, Uber and a bunch of others. So just because we provide great value you don't miss out on competence. We just do it differently. 
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Allan Wellwood

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Thank you for the reassurance, Bernard.   Now.... to deal with my problem and get an official answer (note that I was not recognized as a complainant on this forum because my account cannot be verified) - how do I get myself verified so I can get the REAL answer as to why I was charged roaming fees on calls that I did not receive or acknowledge?  I've gone to the Koodo Mobile Facebook site and sent a message asking the same question.  No answer yet.
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Timo Tuokkola, Mobile Master

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If you clicked the blue "message" button on their Facebook page,
sit back and wait for a response. If not, go back to their Facebook page and do so.
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Dwayne_888

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Bernard, you comparing yourselves to Uber? I guess we should be fortunate you didn't compare yourselves to Trump. #frown

And you guys charge people to call and have your staff answer questions? The premium providers like Robelus would never do such a thing..You are not the easiest to talk to...there are long hold times and people wait for a while for a response on social media. Koodo is an MVNO like Public Mobile and such, you get what you pay for...even less. 

Anyway, I'm into facts not data manipulation....please post the link to this survey you're referring to. I'd like to examine the raw data :)
(Edited)
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Bernard, Official Rep

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Lots of companies have convenience fees. Even the government. Not going to debate that, but you are certainly welcome to visit us. Happy to chat over a coffee or beer. 

You clearly know the answer to your other ask re examining the data. Not going to happen, it's internal data. 
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Ivan, Mobile Master

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You are only charged when you request that the rep make a change to your account that you could've made yourself online. For questions, disputes, and technical difficulties you are not charged for the call.

Yes, the premium providers don't do this. The premium providers also have higher prices.
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Goran, Mobile Master

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I feel like Chris would have said if there was an exception to the location of the phone when it comes to this. As far as I know, satellite still does t auto charge you just for getting a call and not picking up.
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Dwayne_888

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One should never assume....always ask even if the answer seems obvious ;)
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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How do you know if the answer seems obvious?
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Allan Wellwood

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Got the DEFINITIVE ANSWER from Koodo:
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Allan Wellwood

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Here's the reply I received from Koodo concerning my roaming fees caused by a spammer while I was out of country on a cruise ship:

Hi Allan! Thanks for your patience. This situation has been investigated and discussed with multiple agents and the conclusion seems to be that Call Forwarding had been activated towards your voicemail, which shouldn't have been done since, by default, all calls will be transferred to voicemail if the phone is disabled (Turned off, suspended, airplane mode). Then again, satellite roaming is a beast of its own compared to regular roaming and lots of different fee structures and conditions apply based on the satellite provider and region.

However, as an exception, I was able to remove the rest of the additional charges on your bill. This second adjustment will be applied to the current account balance since the payment for last month's charges was already processed. Also, regarding your thread on the community forum. Chris gave you the correct information regarding the Koodo policies and procedures. - Karl

Thank you to everyone who tried to help me resolve this.  BOTTOM LINE:   turn off voice-mail when out of country.
Allan
(Edited)

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