Vodafone claims forced to send Egypt texts
Vodafone has confirmed that Egyptian authorities “forced” it to send government messages to its customers.
Over the past few days of protesting in Egypt, reports have popped up online of text messages apparently arriving directly from Vodafone to Egyptians’ mobile phones.
The messages, some of which have been uploaded to Flickr, appear to come directly from Government authorities.
The text messages shared online call for support for the Government, and for Egyptians to “confront the traitors”.
After days of being accused of willingly propping up President Hosni Mubarak’s administration, Vodafone has admitted sending the text messages, but says it was forced to by the Government.
“Under the emergency powers provisions of the Telecoms Act, the Egyptian authorities can instruct the mobile networks of Mobinil, Etisalat and Vodafone to send messages to the people of Egypt,” Vodafone said in a statement.
“They have used this since the start of the protests,” Vodafone said. “These messages are not scripted by any of the mobile network operators and we do not have the ability to respond to the authorities on their content.”
“Vodafone Group has protested to the authorities that the current situation regarding these messages is unacceptable. We have made clear that all messages should be transparent and clearly attributable to the originator.”
Vodafone also came under fire after internet connections in the country were shut off last week.