A revised Mobile Premium Services Code for the telecommunications sector designed to further strengthen protections in the area of mobile premium services and premium direct billing has just been released by the Communications Alliance.
The CA, which is seeking public comment on the code, wants to see stronger protection under the code for mobile premium services and premium direct-billing services that consumers can purchase from third parties and that are billed through their telecoms provider.
Key changes to the MPS Code include:
- the inclusion of premium direct billing services in all rules relating to advertising, information provision and supply of the service, complaint handling and mechanisms to unsubscribe and opt-out of such services;
- a new default monthly spend limit of $50 for all new customers to assist consumers with their spend management and to avoid the possibility of ‘bill shock’, while still allowing for a limited number of one-off purchases and charitable giving via SMS. Existing and new customers continue to have the ability to set their own spend limits for such purchases;
- an obligation for telecoms providers that include third party charges on a customer’s bill to address all enquiries and resolve all complaints they receive relating to those charges, directly with their customer; and
- strengthened obligations to ensure consumers are informed on how to bar premium services.
Following the public comment period — which end on 15 May — a MPS Code Working Committee will review all comments and revise the draft as appropriate.
Subsequently, Communications Alliance will submit the revised Code to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) for consideration for registration.
In the meantime. the current MPS Code remains in force until the revised Code is registered by the ACMA.
To view the draft revised Code and information on submitting comments click here.