Revised TCP Code streamlines customer information requirements
Sydney, 3 October 2014 – Communications Alliance today released proposed revisions to the Telecommunications Consumer Protections (TCP) Code 2012 as part of a package of revised industry Codes and Guidelines to streamline and improve customer information requirements.
The revisions to the TCP Code– released for public comment – seek to streamline customer information requirements via the removal of duplication, overlap or unnecessary obligations – addressing the well-documented “information overload” that many telecommunications customers experience.
Communications Alliance CEO, John Stanton, said the proposed TCP Code changes form part of industry’s activity to complement the Federal Government’s regulatory reform program.
“The review and rationalisation of the volume, duplication and prescription of obligations on service providers to provide information to customers is in keeping with the Government’s deregulatory agenda and will serve to reduce the burden of regulation without diminishing the customer protections contained within the TCP Code.”
The Communications Alliance Working Committee recommending the revisions was informed by the Framework for Customer Information Provisions developed by the joint Australian Communications and Media Authority/Communications Alliance Customer Information Committee. The Customer Information Committee included representatives from ACMA, Communications Alliance, industry, the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) and the Department of Communications.
The Framework promotes a customer information model that ensures information provided to customers is relevant, accessible and prioritised, while supporting the removal of duplicated and overlapping obligations.
“The removal of duplicated obligations is not expected to have any negative impact on consumers, as the overarching obligations still exist in primary legislation such as the Australian Consumer Law.”
“Consumers are also expected to benefit from amendments which will allow suppliers to tailor information provisions to the needs of their customer base,” Mr Stanton said.
Communications Alliance has also developed new and practical assistance for service providers via a new Industry Guidance Note on advertising and unfair terms. This additional guidance provides real-world examples to help Suppliers comply with the Australian Consumer Law and other legislation when promoting or advertising a Telecommunications Product or Telecommunications Service.
Communications Alliance operational Codes and Guidelines which contained customer information requirements have also been reviewed in light of the proposed changes to the TCP Code. Communications Alliance has recommended changes to six operational Codes, primarily to remove duplication of customer information requirements within each of those documents and the development of a new Customer Authorisation Guideline. These Codes include the Local Number Portability Code, Mobile Number Portability Code, Emergency Call Service Requirements Code, ULLS Ordering, Provisioning and Customer Transfer Code, Pre-Selection Code, Customer and Network Fault Management. These documents are included in the package for public comment.
In line with legislated requirements for Codes, the public comment period will run until 3 November 2014.
ABOUT COMMUNICATIONS ALLIANCE
Communications Alliance is the primary telecommunications industry body in Australia. Its membership is drawn from a wide cross-section of the communications industry, including carriers, carriage and internet service providers, content providers, search engines, equipment vendors, IT companies, consultants and business groups.
Its vision is to provide a unified voice for the telecommunications industry and to lead it into the next generation of converging networks, technologies and services. The prime mission of Communications Alliance is to promote the growth of the Australian communications industry and the protection of consumer interests by fostering the highest standards of business ethics and behaviour through industry self-governance. For more details about Communications Alliance, see www.commsalliance.com.au.Media information contact:
Kreab Gavin Anderson
Lucy Chamberlain firstname.lastname@example.org 0402 106 613