Ofcom Review 2008

By: John Gray

A new year means new rules and now that 2008 is here Ofcom will be meeting to review the ever changing mobile phone industry. Some issues featured on the on the agenda to be discussed will include cashback deals, mobile phone slamming, porting of telephone numbers and mis-selling.

Cashback deals can have difficult to understand terms and conditions and these will be scrutinised by Ofcom. Anyone looking for a cashback deal should ensure they go through a reputable retailer, buying through a comparison website such as moneysavingexpert.com or onecompare.com will give you advice and help when claiming your cashback, and will help interpret retailer's terms and conditions for you.

Slamming has become more prevelant in 2007, if you receive a phone call from somebody claiming to be your mobile phone network you should always ensure that it is your network calling you. Never give any of your details over the telephone and ask the network why they are calling you. You can then call the network yourself to make sure it is the network you are taking to directly.

Complaints to consumer direct have increased in 2007, although complaints did lower at the end of the year but they have still been higher than 2006.

In the last 12 months Ofcom have come under increased pressure with complaints to consumer helplines increasing greatly. 2007 saw network operators seeking help from the courts regarding such issues. O2, Vodafone, Orange and T-Mobile are appealing against the European Court of Justice about the EU roaming cap while 3 are challenging number porting rules.

A review of published guidelines is expected to be out early this year, with Ofcom looking to promote the interests of consumers of mobile phone products and services.

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