The comments follow a report by the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) which CA says noted that a provider had breached consumer trust.
“It is very disappointing when a provider breaches consumer trust, and the rules it is required to observe,” said John Stanton, CEO of telecommunications industry body Communications Alliance.
“We are working with Communications Compliance and the ACMA to provide education on supplier requirements across the sector, and will always work with industry members who are looking to improve.
“However, unfortunately in such a large marketplace – according to the TIO’s 2018 annual report there were 1,600 providers – small and often transient players sometimes attempt to operate outside the rules.
“Providers like that are not welcome in our Industry. Communications Alliance members are working with the ACMA to act against such behaviour and prevent those providers from continuing to operate.”
Stanton said that “additionally, the strengthened Industry Code – the Telecommunications Consumer Protections (TCP) Code - comes into effect today, including vigorous new rules on selling practices, which will help the ACMA enforce against the practices raised in the TIO’s Spotlight.”
As reported by iTWire in early July, the telecommunications regulator, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), said that telco customers would now be better protected under new consumer protection rules it had just introduced.
The enhancement of protections came after the ACMA announced that it had revised and strengthened the Telecommunications Consumer Protections Code which requires telcos to promote and sell their products in a fair and responsible manner.
The industry-developed Code also requires telcos to clearly explain key terms and conditions to enable consumers to make informed decisions and to assess a customer’s capacity to pay.
"We see evidence of customers being encouraged to sign up to multiple plans which do not meet th.eir needs, are excessive or beyond their financial capacity,” ACMA chair Nerida O’Loughlin said.
“The impact of this is serious, particularly for those in vulnerable circumstances, leading to financial hardship and denial of access to critical services.”