Optus $200K Fine Misleading $49 Max Caps

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Telco has received a rap for “misleading” $49 Max Cap ads, and fined almost $200,000.The ads which ran over July and August 2010 implied a maximum fee for the mobile package was $49 when in fact this was found to be the minimum consumers were obliged to pay, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission found (ACCC).

This contravened of consumer legislation Trade Practices Act 1974, which forbids false advertising about goods and services.

The mobile cap ads also claimed to allow making of any type of calls when in fact only certain types were permitted. The advertisments appeared in print and online.

And it’s not he first time the SingTel owned carrier has been rebuked by the ACCC for over zealous advertising.

Last year, the Federal Court found that Optus
breached the Trade Practices Act with its advertising of its “Think
Bigger” and “Supersonic” internet plans, after being referred by the Commission.

“Claims that a service allows consumers to call ‘anyone’ are likely to be misleading if the reality is that some types of calls are excluded,” ACCC chairman Peter Kell said in a statement.

SingTel Optus Pty Ltd was fined 27 separate fines of $6,600 for infringements of Trade Act  totalling $178,200.

 

“If you advertise a service as a ‘$49 Max Cap’ when $49 is the minimum that consumers have to pay, then you risk breaching the law by misleading consumers about the cost of the service,” Kell added.

The telco was served with the notices on April 18.

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