The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) says Vodafone Hutchison Australia has accepted an enforcable undertaking over dealer telemarketing after a series of complaints from people on the Do Not Call register.
In a statement issued this morning, ACMA said that Vodafone has agreed to reign in phone dealers making wayward, unsolicited phone calls to people on the Federal Government’s Do Not Call list that details the numbers of people who don’t want to be called by telemarketers.
Heavy fines and penalties apply for companies that continue to call customers on the list (aside from select public interest organisations such as charities), that was introduced by the Federal Government in 2006 and has since been adapted to include other forms of marketing including fax lines.
“‘Compliance with the Do Not Call Register Act 2006 needs to be considered by telecommunications carriers across their entire dealer network,” ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman, said in a statement today.
“The cornerstone of the undertaking is that VHA will be auditing and reporting back to the ACMA on all its dealers’ telemarketing activities. If it finds any of its dealers potentially breaching the Do Not Call Register Act, it must report the dealer to the ACMA immediately.”
Vodafone says in response to the complaints, it’ll accept ACMA’s enforcable undertaking – meaning the agreement is enforceable by the Australian Federal Court – and will alert ACMA if it discovers any of its dealers making the problematic calls.
The carrier will also require dealers to maintain what it calls “comprehensive records” of telemarketing calls made, as well as roll-out a new opt-out procedure that’ll allow Vodafone customers to request to no longer receive marketing calls from the company or its dealers.
Rival carrier Optus also last year fell foul of the Do Not Call list, and was also forced to revamp its own telemarketing program following a number of complaints to ACMA.
Poor keeping of records, oversights in Optus’ call centres and failures in the recording of those wanting to remove themselves from Optus’ telemarketing program all led to the complaints.