Who sent the hoax Dh5,000 illegal VPN fine SMS?

Who sent the hoax Dh5,000 illegal VPN fine SMS?

Abu Dhabi - TRA investigates fabricated SMS that caused panic among some residents.



By Web Report

Published: Thu 25 Jan 2018, 11:00 PM

Last updated: Fri 26 Jan 2018, 8:03 AM

UAE's Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (TRA) is working with concerned agencies to investigate the recent hoax SMS asking residents to pay a fine of Dh5,000 at the nearest police station for illegal use of virtual private networks (VPNs) or calling cards.
The investigation aims to find where the message originated and who sent it.
The SMS was attributed to the authority, stating that the receiver of the message must pay the fine since they were caught using VPN.
The hoax message was flagged on Twitter after UAE netizens tweeted a screen grab of the message to the concerned authorities.
The TRA said that such messages might be part of a con or scam and urged residents to not circulate such messages and contact authorities for official clarifications.

In another tweet today, TRA warned against spreading rumours or misinformation online:
Talking to Emarat Al Youm, the TRA clarified that using VPNs is allowed in UAE by businesses and regular consumers - if used for legal purposes.

Legal use:

The TRA added that illegal use of VPNs was punishable as per the cybercrime law.
Earlier last year, we had reported that users in the UAE can technically use VPNs as long as they're the legal ones - and you won't use it for anything against the law.
There's a silver lining, however: if you read the TRA's policy carefully, a VoIP service will be allowed in the UAE if it meets certain criteria and conditions.


More news from UAE