Sprint Telco pays penalty for unauthorised transfer

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) stated that Sprint Telco Pty Ltd (Sprint Telco), a telecommunications provider, has paid a penalty of $10,800 following the issue of an infringement notice by the ACCC.

The ACCC issued the infringement notice because it had reasonable grounds to believe that Sprint Telco made a false or misleading representation to a consumer during a telemarketing call in October 2016, in which the consumer was transferred from Telstra Corporation Limited (Telstra) to Sprint Telco.

It is alleged that Sprint Telco represented to the consumer that Sprint Telco was acting as Telstra's agent or with Telstra's approval, when that was not the case.

"Unauthorised transfers can result in unexpected costs to consumers such as early termination fees, cancellation fees, loss of discounts from bundling services and costs to reconnect with their original provider," ACCC Acting Chair Delia Rickard said

"Consumers are entitled to make informed decisions about their choice of service provider. The ACCC will continue to act where consumers are switched, or attempted to be switched, from one telecommunications service provider to another without their express knowledge or informed consent," Ms Rickard said.

In consultation with the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), the ACCC has issued further guidance to help educate consumers on how to avoid becoming the victim of an unauthorised transfer.

The payment of a penalty specified in an infringement notice is not an admission of a contravention of the Australian Consumer Law. The ACCC can issue an infringement notice where it has reasonable grounds to believe a person has contravened certain consumer protection laws. Sprint Telco is not affiliated with the U.S company, Sprint Corporation.
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