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PSA publishes statements on its regulatory framework and new Special conditions

30 November 2016

The PSA today publishes statements on its regulatory framework and Special conditions, for online competition and online adult services. Proposals presented in the consultations published in August have been refined following engagement and feedback from industry and wider stakeholders.

Regulatory framework proposals
In our 30th year of regulating phone-paid services, the consultation explored whether our regulatory framework remains fit for purpose. The proposals ensure our approach continues to support the interest of consumers by supporting sustainable market growth, based on consumer confidence and keeping pace with market and technological evolution.

The key proposals considered and developed are:

  • a risk assessment framework for application of Special conditions for higher risk services
  • clarification on how equivalent standards may be assessed to consider whether risk-controlled services warrant exemptions from specific Code provisions
  • a basis for mapping the regulatory landscape and the potential benefits to stakeholders
  • joint regulatory handling of new business plans, mechanics and service proposals, where there is overlap with other regulators and where it is deemed necessary
  • joint monitoring capabilities to drive efficiencies in the phone-paid services market.       

Read our Statement in response to consultation on the PSA Regulatory framework.

Special conditions for online competition and adult services

We are introducing additional regulatory requirements for online competition services and online adult services following consultation with industry and wider stakeholders published in August. In response to market issues and findings from independent research into consumer journeys, we proposed additional regulatory requirements, in the form of Special conditions for these services. Our proposed requirements have been refined following engagement and feedback from stakeholders and will come into force on 4 January 2017.

Key aspects of the finalised requirements on providers of these services include:   

  • a clearer, single point of purchase, separate from service interaction
  • clear identification of the brand of the service offered to and used by the consumer
  • consent to be charged to be obtained in one of three ways:
    a. use of a secure PIN loop system
    b. use of a password system, or
    c. Use of secure, consumer controlled, mobile originating short message service system
  • receipts to be sent each time a consumer incurs a charge
  • retention of current Code requirements for consumer opt-out processes – we  will be engaging further on his area to assess systems and possible alternatives.

We expect providers who operate services to which these Special conditions apply to make any necessary changes in time for the implementation date.

Statement on introducing Special conditions for online competition and online adult services

Notice of Special conditions for online competition services
Notice of Special conditions for online adult services

Consultation responses for the regulatory framework

Consultation responses for proposed Special conditions regimes for online competition services and online adult PRS

Implementation notice relating to Special conditions for online competition services and online adult services