HomeInsightsDepartment for Culture, Media and Sport announces creation of a new independent Consumer Advocate for the telecoms sector to protect mobile and broadband customers from unfair practices

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The Government says that it will legislate to create this new advocate, which will have the power to stand up for consumers, ensuring they get the right treatment from mobile, broadband, pay-TV, and landline providers.

This brings the telecoms sector into line with other essential services sectors, such as energy, water, post or transport which already have dedicated, independent and well-funded consumer advocates.

The new advocate will:

  • conduct research and use it to highlight areas where the consumer experience can be improved;
  • represent consumers in key policy and regulatory debates, as the rollout of full fibre broadband and 5G mobile technology gathers pace;
  • provide direct support and advice to consumers, particularly the most vulnerable, who can struggle to engage with what is an increasingly complex market, as the Extra Help Unit does in the energy sector;
  • work directly with industry to help them improve consumer outcomes, for example by bringing together industry best practice; and
  • support the UK’s digital connectivity ambitions by running campaigns to help consumers get the best deals and upgrade to better and faster services, similar to the Big Energy Saving Week.

The DCMS will launch a consultation outlining further details over the summer, including options for creating the new advocate and how it could be funded. To read the DCMS press release in full, click here.

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