Ofcom: Operators Should Cap Bills

Ofcom has set out an action plan to tackle the bill shock caused by unexpectedly high phone tariffs – by encouraging mobile operators to let users place caps on their spending. The regulator carried out a review finding mobile contract customers were the most likely to be affected by the problem – with 1.4m getting a unpleasant surprise bill over the last six months.

Ofcom has written to mobile providers urging them to develop and promote opt-in measures to help control the issue, including spending caps and alerts which can be set by customers. If these measures do not reduce the problem sufficiently, Ofcom says it may consider mandatory solutions.

The review on which Ofcoms action plan is based found that the main causes of bill shock were roaming charges, downloading data which customers didnt realise they were using – especially while travelling outside the EU – and lost or stolen handsets.