ComReg forces Vodafone to let customers decide on e-billing adoption

June 7, 2012  |  Adoption, Electronic Invoicing, Legal

On 25 October 2011, the Commission for Communications Regulation (“ComReg”) notified Vodafone of findings that it had not complied with its licence conditions and related statutory obligations in relation to its implementation of electronic billing (e-billing). This could even lead to losing its license in Ireland.

Background

The mobile operator recently began informing customers that they would in future be receiving their bills online in stead of by mail. The move was expected to affect just under 200,000 of the company’s 2.4 million customers. However ComReg’s intervention will end the practice for these 200.000 customers.

The 200.000 customers affected, complained against this sudden change of customer service. And ComReg stepped in and sanctioned this move.

From a malicious OPT-OUT to proactively OPT-IN

Vodafone was forced to propose a comprehensive and proactive programme of customer communications, covering all of the customers affected, so as to verify customer preferences and agreement regarding the type of billing that they wish to receive, in accordance with the principles of consumer choice and consent. Wow!

Based on this programma, COMREG has decided that, as the above approach addresses the Commission’s concerns and takes full account of the preferences of consumers, it will not take further enforcement action at this time.


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