Ofcom has amended its code of practice for premium rate phone companies in an effort to stop unscrupulous operators cashing in on phone scams.
The Independent Committee for the Supervision of Standards of Telephone Information Services (ICSTIS), a self-regulating industry body, has obtained approval from Ofcom for an amendment its code of practice.
This will halt all payments to operators for a 30-day period after a service is launched.
"The introduction of a 30-day payment requirement is great news for consumers," said ICSTIS director George Kidd.
"Our action removes a major incentive for rogue service providers, namely getting their hands on the money as quickly as possible.
"This amendment brings back some common sense in ensuring that networks pay service providers on roughly the same terms as they themselves are paid."
The move, described as an "emergency" action, is aimed at stopping short-term scams that spam out messages asking mobile phone users to call back to confirm an order.
The reply number, usually an 090 code, will leave the caller on hold for as long as possible before asking them to call back.
The 30-day waiting period will allow users a chance to alert Ofcom and ICSTIS so that the funds can be blocked.
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