FCC Proposes Measures against “Bill Shock”

Yesterday, the U.S. Federal Communications Committee voted unanimously to explore regulation that would require mobile operators to provide usage alerts and related information that assists consumers in avoiding unexpected charges on their bills.

The proposed rules would empower consumers with simple alerts and easy-to-find tools and information so they can make smart decisions about their mobile plans.

According to a recent FCC survey, 30 million Americans – one in six mobile users – have experienced bill shock. More than half those consumers saw an increase of USD50 or more, but many were not alerted by their provider before they incurred the charges.

The current tools to eliminate bill shock vary widely between operators and type of service, and can be difficult to find. Most of the alerts offered do not cover all services or are not sent before the overage charges are incurred.

The Commission proposes that consumers be provided with baseline information that would allow them to control their mobile costs, including 1) Over-the-Limit Alerts 2) Out-of-the-Country Alerts and 3) Easy-to-Find Tools.

The agency is currently seeking public comment on the proposed regulation.

The wireless industry continues to argue that regulation to prevent bill shock is not necessary.

Read the full press release.

Source: FCC, DSLreports.com

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