Ofcom tackles network charges in switching crackdown

Ofcom tackles network charges in switching crackdown

Ofcom has announced new proposals to get tough with networks who charge users even after they have switched to a new provider.

The UK regulator stressed that consumers are currently being charged after they switch their service to a new provider. These ‘double payments’ are believed to cost consumers £13m a year.

Under new proposals, Ofcom has said it would look to scrap network charges beyond the date a customer switches.

CEO Sharon White has taken a hard line when it comes to tackling the issue, previously stating that mobile has less switching than other industries and branding the current system as ‘unacceptable’.

The regulator announced the changes as it revealed plans to make it easier for landline, broadband, and pay TV customers to switch providers.

Out with the old

The new mobile proposals follow plans announced by the regulator in March to make the new provider responsible for the switch and transferring the customer’s mobile phone number.

At the time Ofcom stressed that the PAC code needed by users to switch should also be available online and through text. This would replace the old system where customers would have to contact the network directly and was championed by both TalkTalk and Three.

Commenting on Ofcom’s new reforms, a Three spokesperson said: ‘Three has long campaigned for reform of switching in mobile. A change to gaining provider led switching is the only way to improve competition and ensure that the best mobile deals are not kept only for those customers who want to leave their current provider’.




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