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Fraudulent Mobile Phone Use

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Skithepowder | 14:42 Sat 16th Aug 2008 | Law
2 Answers
I am a student and moved house on 1st July this year. In the process of moving someone somehow got hold of my old mobile phone, I don't know if it was stolen out of the car, dropped out of a box or what but someone got hold of it. Seeing as it was an old phone I didn't notice it had gone missing. A couple of weeks ago, my new phone started playing up so I went into a vodafone shop intending to buy a cheap phone to use on my old contract (I had 2 as I had been given cashback on my new phone to pay the bill for the last 6 months of my old contract by carphone warehouse). At his point (29th July) I was told my account had been blocked on 16th July due to suspiscious acitivity and I had a bill for �1700 on calls to Romania. This was the first I had heard of it. I reported the incident to the police and got a crime reference number. I don't have any insurance for it.

What are my options?

Are Vodafone at fault for not informing me they blocked my account? Surely they are at afult for allowing fraudulent activity to go on for over 2 weeks before blocking the account and letting the bill rise to �1700? Shoud I still have to pay the bill if they have investigated it and it has been deemed fraudulent usage not by me?
What happens if I refuse to pay it?

Basically where do I stand legally and what are my options?

Thanks guys.


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I am sorry to say that if you read your contract, you are responsible for paying all the call charges run up on your phone. How can it be Vodaphone's fault that you lost your phone? I also think your contract will say that you remain liable for fraudulent activity until it is reported to them. Whilst I am sympathetic to your problem, I fear that there is little you can do other than negotiate with Vodafone, but in reality, you may well end up with a CCJ against you if they refuse (as a gesture of good will, since they have no obligation to do so) to reduce your bill.
I agree with Barmaid.

It is your phone, your responsibility, your choice not to have insurance, your failure to notice it was lost/missing/stolen.

Try and negotiate a reduced bill and time to pay.

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