ComReg has issued a warning to telecommunications company Meteor Mobile Communications Limited (Meteor) in relation to an effort by Meteor to move mobile phone customers over to e-billing. The telecoms regulator says that Meteor failed to notify customers of the change in their contracts and that customers have a right to be offered an opportunity to opt-out of, or reject changes to, their contract under EU legislation.
Meteor began moving 207,000 mobile customers on Meteor and eMobile packages over to e-billing from paper billing in August, attracting criticism from consumers groups as a result. Concerns were raised, in particular in relation to elderly customers who may not have been comfortable with the switch. Meteor was given until the end of September to respond to its claim, or remedy the issues concerned, or further legal action would be taken before the High Court to enforce compliance.
Meteor stated that it was disappointed with the position taken by ComReg and noted that customers could opt out of the proposed change by replying to notices that they would have received by e-mail or text message. ComReg had indicated in its Strategy Statement for 2012 – 2014 that it would monitor issues related to online billing and this latest warning demonstrates its willingness to follow through on that commitment.
Contributed by Leo Moore.
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