PUTRAJAYA: An entrepreneur was fined RM80,000 by the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court yesterday, for using unauthorised communications equipment known as an ‘SMS Blaster’, which caused serious disruption to network and cellular services.

MCMC in a statement today said the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court Judge made the decision after the 36-year-old man pleaded guilty to four charges brought against him by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).

According to the statement, the entrepreneur was charged with two charges under Regulation 16(1)(b) of the Communications and Multimedia (Technical Standards) Regulations 2000 for using the SMS Blaster at the Memoire Suites Condominium, Dua Central, and EkoCheras, Kuala Lumpur.

“For the other two counts, he was charged under Regulation 34(5)(c) of the Communications and Multimedia (Spectrum) Regulations 2000 for using the SMS Blaster and causing interference with the network and cellular services of a licensed telecommunications company,“ according to MCMC.

MCMC stated that for all the charges, the man could be fined not more than RM300,000 or imprisoned for a maximum of three years, or both.

An investigation by the MCMC Enforcement Division found that the modus operandi employed by the entrepreneur was to install the SMS Blaster device with an antenna in condominium units adjacent to highways.

The SMS Blaster was modified to become a fake base transceiver station (BTS), and when people’s mobile phones connected to the said SMS Blaster, the 4G network service would be disrupted and dropped to a 2G connection.

As a result, the public began to receive advertisement messages such as advertisements for money lending services, and advertisements for gambling activities through short message service (SMS).

The illegal activity also caused problems such as dropped calls and unsatisfactory internet service quality.