Minister: Put an end to spam

KUALA LUMPUR - Enough is enough.

Information, Communications and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim is fed up with SMS spam and wants it to stop.

Rais, who has also been spammed with suggestive pornographic text, wants the Malaysian Communica-tions and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) and telecommunication companies to find a way to stop the spread of such unsolicited texts.

"We certainly do not welcome the utilisation of veiled pornography or veiled gaming within SMS. This should stop.

"We can do this under the law but we would rather let telcos and the relevant departments in MCMC do their homework.

"Datuk Sharil (MCMC chairman Datuk Mohamed Sharil Tarmizi) has told me that he will commence to ignite the interest for this and I think it is a good start," he said yesterday after a session with the Malaysian Mobile Phone Owners Association (Perbit) which is opposing a proposed 6% service charge on prepaid mobile phone users.

Rais said he would give MCMC two months to get back to him before calling for a meeting with consumers, MCMC and telco companies.

"I told them that under the law we can direct them to do it now. But now that the chairman said he will do it, let us give them two months."

On the spam text he received, Dr Rais said it invited him to dial a number to look at "cute girls" while his son received a text which promised him a return of RM11 (S$4.5) in two days if he invested RM5 into their scheme.

Other porn spam have invited mobile users to check out "gadis hot" (hot girls) or log on to a "laman panas" (hot website).

Users have also received unsolicited text messages on pyramid schemes and fake promises of a prize, among others.

On Perbit, its president Mohd Ali Ibrahim said they were planning to collect one million signatures by mid-year as part of their campaign against the proposed 6% service charge.

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