Something I cannot understand.
Giffgaff receive a percentage of the money from each and every successful scam.
O2 are part owners of payforit which facilitates the scam.
In the non digital world, someone seen to benefit from the proceeds of crime (fraud in this case), would also be deemed to have committed a criminal act.
So why just because it is digital, by facilitating the crime and benefiting from the proceeds of crime are giffgaff not seen to be guilty of criminal activity.
If the onus were on the networks to reimburse customers scammed in the way they would find a way to stop the practice very quickly.
You're absolutely correct. It is legally negligent and morally reprehensible that GiffGaff continue to facilitate these scams.
Unfortunately the laws around these services have never really been tested, and mounting a legal challenge is prohibitively expensive.
However, all is not lost. If you follow the correct procedures it is possible to recover the stolen money and make life difficult for the scammers. In addition, the work involved in handling these complaints may give the networks reason to reconsider their stance.
Your first step should be to seek a refund from the company which has scammed you. Don't let the scammers win. Insist on a FULL refund. If the scammers refuse to refund or fail to respond to emails and phone calls, you are entitled to refer the matter back to GiffGaff. If GiffGaff fail to deal with the matter within a reasonable timeframe, you have cause for a formal complaint or for starting the Small Claims procedure citing their negligence.
However, in the case of mGage, you are dealing with a UK registered company. You have a stronger claim aginst them than you have against GiffGaff and they are subject to UK law.
mGage Europe Limited (trading as mGage)
The Tower Building
11 York Road
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7633 5000
There is no dispute that they have your money. They claim you consented to them taking it. It will be for them to provide irrefutable proof that you consented. They will not be able to do this.
Where you are dealing with an overseas company, pursuing your network may be a better approach. Once again, the Small Claims procedure is probably better than the formal complaints method. Make it clear that you are claiming because you consider the network to be negligent in allowing the money to be taken.
There is no minimum amount that can be claimed in the small claims court. The court fee for starting a claim is £25 for a claim of up to £300, and you can add this fee to the amount claimed. Don't start a claim before you have sent a letter before action giving them at least two weeks to provide a refund.
However you choose to tackle the matter, it IS important to follow the prescribed procedures. Don't allow your anger to lead you to make mistakes. Otherwise the companies concerned can escape on technicalities.
I hope you manage to sort this matter out and obtain a refund.