Bills on unsolicited texts, calls gets Congress nod

Regulations seeking to protect consumers from unwanted mobile phone calls and text messages have gained traction in Congress.

The House Committee on Information and Communications has approved substitute bills "No Calls and No Text Registration" for House Bill No. 1030 filed by Pasig City Rep. Roman Romulo and House Resolution No. 86 by Quezon City Rep. Winston Castelo, the state-run Philippine News Agency reports this Friday

Among the proposed bills goals is to make it illegal to send text message without disclosing full name of the caller or text sender or the company or organization that will benefit from it. This includes providing a fixed line where Filipinos can use to verify their identities.

Prohibited messages were also laid out, which include congratulatory messages for winning a bogus contest, texts supposedly from a relative abroad asking the recipient to reload their new roaming number and requiring recipients to text personal details to register in shady deals.

Offenders will be penalized with fines starting at P50,000 up to P100,000

In addition, the bills recommend the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to create a No Calls and No Text Registry to control unsolicited messages and calls. In addition, the list will make phone numbers the only information available about the people in its records.