The TIO recorded 4,653 confirmed code breaches during 2010-11, a drop of 32 per cent from the previous financial year. The reason for the decrease is that fewer cases required detailed investigation by the TIO. It may not reflect improved code compliance within the telecommunications industry.
The TIO recorded confirmed breaches by 122 different service providers during 2010-11, but more than 80 per cent of those confirmed breaches related to only ten providers.
Of the 4,653 confirmed breaches recorded, 4,634 (99.59 per cent) relate to the Telecommunication Consumer Protection Code. Almost half the confirmed breaches concerned member compliance with the complaint handling provisions of the TCP Code (2,293 in total), while credit management related provisions accounted for another 19 per cent. Billing provisions accounted for 14 per cent (632 in total).
The most commonly recorded breaches during 2010-11 were about a failure by suppliers to action the undertakings they made to resolve consumers’ complaints and the failure of suppliers to adequately resource their complaint-handling departments.
DESCRIPTION TOTAL CONFIRMED
% TCP Code - 9.1.1(f) Providers must record, action and monitor the undertakings they make to resolve consumer complaints
TCP Code - 9.1.1(d) A provider must ensure that its complaint handling department is sufficiently resourced 658 14.1
TCP Code - 9.2.5 A provider must seek to resolve a complaint at first contact, and where this is not possible the complaint must be finalised within 30 days or as soon as practicable in all the circumstances. 519 11.1
TCP Code - 3.2.1 The information that the provider gives to a consumer must be accurate, relevant, current and timely 462. 9.9 TCP Code - 6.4.1
Providers must both ensure and be able to demonstrate that their billing is accurate 371 7.9 TCP Code - 7.3.4 Providers must both have and apply free credit control tools to manage customer expenditure where appropriate 150 3.2 TCP Code - 7.4.10(a) A provider must not take credit management activity in relation to genuinely disputed amounts while that amount is the subject of an ongoing investigation 147 3.1 TCP Code - 6.4.2 Bills must contain enough information for a consumer to be able to easily determine whether they have been billed accurately or not 104 2.2 TCP Code - 4.2.4(a)(iii) If a consumer has made it clear that they are planning on using a product/service for a particular purpose, a provider must inform the consumer of anything they are aware of that might affect the consumer's ability to use the product/service for that purpose 73 1.5 TCP Code -
A provider must make every reasonable effort to tell a complainant within 5 working days about the probable timeframe for finalisation given the complexity of their complaint. The provider must also keep the complainant updated about timeframe delays and about the complaint's progress. 72 1.5