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366 posts

Ultimate Geek

#138385 1-Jan-2014 18:27
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We had a prepay Vodafone mobile that was expiring and we did not wish to renew so I wanted to use up the balance with donations to a charity (sorry Vodafone).  I checked the Vodafone website and on this page there is a link to a PDF with short code details.  I made a $3 donation to the Salvation Army on 4419 and received an acknowledgement from SAFE to "help stop factory farming".  

I rang Vodafone customer support who advised the money should have gone to the Salvation Army and gave me an 0800 number to call which went through to Run the Red, an SMS service provider.  They stated that neither the Salvation Army nor SAFE were their customers but I acknowledge this was an evening call with perhaps limited support.

I then found a list on the 2degrees website premium text page with a list of Premium Messaging Partners which was last dated 18 December 2013 and had SAFE on 4419.  It seemed the Vodafone list was out of date.  I contacted Vodafone via email and they said their list would be updated and were good stating they would refund the donation (no complaints about their support).

A comparison of the two lists was more revealing showing nine separate charity numbers that were different between the two lists.

EDIT: added higher resolution

I contacted Run the Red asking about reassignments and was told "The Vodafone list isn't updated as requests are updated. These are updated periodically however."  There may be a limited pool of numbers and as these fund raising campaigns might be of short duration it probably makes sense to reuse the numbers (but within the same year?).  However, it might be disturbing for a belated donation to go a charity the donor does not support.

Vodafone will hopefully update their list but as I have said in a response to them if there is the chance that other reassignments might not get captured then perhaps it is better not to name the recipient.  My question for this forum is whether the carrier (Vodafone) is responsible for advising these number assignments and end recipients?  Should there be an accurate list readily available (somewhere)? 

I have posted this in the Vodafone forum as it primarily relates to an index list on the Vodafone website but also applies to other mobile operators that should apparently all share these same SMS numbers.

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19282 posts

Uber Geek
Inactive user

  #960056 1-Jan-2014 18:44
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I personally know who updates the list will pass this INFO onto them when back at work



366 posts

Ultimate Geek

  #960069 1-Jan-2014 19:12
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johnr: I personally know who updates the list will pass this INFO onto them when back at work


Thanks John.  My issue is the list wasn't updated that long ago (based on file date 31 Oct 2013) and it seems to me the 3rd party provider can remap the assignments without a requirement for there to be an updated index.  It seems to me like Vodafone is publishing a phone book but the 3rd party provider can chose where to send those funds.  

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