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Media Release: Alarming Increase in Internet Complaints must be Addressed

OTTAWA – The alarming increase in internet complaints reported by the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Services (CCTS) today must be addressed by the regulator and the industry, claims the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC).

PIAC noted that the CCTS Annual Report 2014-15, released today, shows a 52% increase in complaint issues related to internet service – which rose from 3315 last year to over 5000 in 2014-15.

“Canadians rely more and more on their internet connection – so it is disturbing that complaints against ISPs have shot up” said John Lawford, Executive Director and General Counsel of PIAC.  “The internet service industry should consider its practices and the CRTC should consider an Internet Code like the Wireless Code.”

PIAC further notes the CCTS Annual Report shows complaints about “non-disclosure of/misleading information about terms” now is the most frequent single complaint issue, ahead of even “incorrect charge” – although all billing issues combined still predominate overall.

“The systemic issue with non-disclosure of, and frankly incorrect descriptions of, terms and conditions – most often by salespeople and front line customer service staff –  to consumers has not been adequately addressed by the industry despite the Wireless Code,” continued Lawford.  “We trust the CRTC will consider expanding the CCTS’s enforcement powers, including the ability to directly address systemic issues, to reverse this troublesome trend.”

 

For more information please contact:

 John Lawford
Executive Director
Public Interest Advocacy Centre
ONE Nicholas Street, Suite 1204
Ottawa, Ontario
K1N 7B7
(613) 562-4002 x25
(613) 447-8125 (cell)
jlawford@piac.ca
 

http://www.piac.ca

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