Young people drinking

“It can only be a matter of time before the Information Commissioner comes knocking.”, claimed Scrapbook back in June, when we reported on the case of a payday loan company that was sending out fake text messages purporting to be from recipients’ friends.

The ICO didn’t so much knock as blow the house in — with a £175,000 fine for First Financial (UK) Ltd announced today. The messages from the company encouraged recipients to take out a payday loan in order to come out drinking — with many of the texts sent in the early hours of the morning:

Fake text from payday loan company

The commissioner’s monetary penalty notice states:

“The business was set up by a financial adviser (Hamed Shabani) just to deal with topical marketing campaigns using unregistered SIM cards. It appears that its aim was to send as many unlawful unsolicited texts to as many people as possible with the minimum adverse effect upon itself.”

From Companies House records we can see it is Mr Shabani’s birthday on Friday.

Perhaps he should take out a payday loan to pay for his celebrations.

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