Attorney General Eric  Schneiderman on Saturday announced a settlement with Game Theory, a mobile-content corporation based in San Jose, Calif., following an investigation that revealed the company was sending spam text messages to New Yorkers and then tricking them into signing up for texting services.

Game Theory has agreed to reform its business practices and pay $500,000 in penalties for deceptive and fraudulent advertising of its premium text message service.

The attorney general also provided consumers with tips on how to avoid texting scams:

  • Never respond to unsolicited text messages, even those that read "reply 'stop' to avoid charges."
  • Advise family members, especially children, that responding to text messages, email or television commercials that advertise services such as joke-of-the-day texts, horoscopes, love advice, and ringtones will incur charges that may be difficult to rebut.
  • Discuss these tips with all family members who have access to a cell phone. Deceptive cell phone practices often target younger users.