Between 24 September 2016 and 30 November 2016, the Executive received 69 complaints concerning an Information, Connection and Signposting Service (ICSS), charged at £3.60 per minute. The Level 2 provider for the service was DK Call Limited. The Network Operator for the service was TelecomIQ Limited.
Complainants variously alleged that the Service was misleading and that that they were not made aware of the Service costs.
The Executive raised the following potential breaches of the PSA Code of Practice 14th Edition (“the Code”):
- Rule 2.2.1 – Transparency and pricing
- Rule 2.2.7 – Pricing information
- Rule 2.3.2 – Misleading
- Rule 3.4.14a – Number registration
- Paragraph 3.11.3 – Special conditions ICSS 1
- Paragraph 3.11.3 – Special conditions ICSS 3
- Paragraph 4.2.2 – Provision of false information to the PSA
The Tribunal upheld all the breaches of the Code raised save for the alleged breach of paragraph 3.12.3 of the Code (Special Condition ICSS 3) and the alleged breach of rule 3.4.14 (a) (Failure to register a number). The Level 2 provider’s revenue in relation to the Service was in Band 2 (£500,000 - £999,000). The Tribunal considered the case to be Very Serious and imposed a formal reprimand, a total fine of £645,000, and a requirement that the service provider seek compliance advice and implement the compliance advice to the satisfaction of the Phone-paid Services Authority (PSA) before charging any new consumers.The Tribunal also imposed a requirement that the Level 2 provider must refund all consumers who claim a refund, for the full amount spent by them on the Service, within 28 days of their claim, save where there is good cause to believe that such claims are not valid, and provide evidence to the PSA that such refunds have been made.
Administrative charge recommendation: 95%
If you have been affected by this service and wish to claim a refund, please contact the provider on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01202937565. You should be refunded within 28 days of making a valid claim.