"The "Prepaid Short Messaging" patent describes a method and apparatus for tariffing a short message prior to being received by a recipient and determining if the recipient has sufficient funds to pay for delivery of the message. The recipient's account is debited prior to delivery of the short message and the message is delivered if the account has sufficient funds. If the recipient's account does not have sufficient funds, then the message is prevented from being delivered. An unsuccessful message can then be sent to either the sender and/or the recipient. The short message can originate from a subscriber, a mobile servicing center or an automatic message delivery option."