Optus is overhauling its telemarketing practices consistent with an enforceable undertaking recently accepted by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.
An ACMA investigation found Optus had inadequate telemarketing compliance systems, resulting in thousands of complaints about Optus telemarketers calling people with numbers listed on the Do Not Call Register.
Many of these complaints came from Optus customers who had expressly opted out of receiving Optus marketing contact.
‘While businesses are able to make telemarketing calls to their customers in some circumstances, they clearly need to respect any request by their customers that these calls stop,’ said ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman.
Under the court enforceable undertaking, Optus has agreed that for two years it will:
• Keep comprehensive records of telemarketing calls that it makes or that are made by call centres on its behalf
• Audit these records on a monthly basis, and report back to the ACMA (so as to give the ACMA early visibility to any problems)
• Implement robust procedures to record customers who have opted out of receiving further telemarketing calls
The ACMA’s use of enforceable undertakings to achieve better compliance with the telemarketing requirements has proved effective over the past few years.
After Telstra gave a similar undertaking in 2009, and worked assiduously to resolve the problems, the ACMA noted an 89 per cent fall in complaints about the telemarketing activities of Telstra.
Members of the public can opt out of receiving unsolicited telemarketing calls and marketing faxes by calling 1300 792 958 or by visiting www.donotcall.gov.au.
Complaints about telemarketing calls and marketing faxes can be made the same way. A person can also request a business with which he or she has an existing relationship to stop making telemarketing calls or sending marketing faxes in future.
Source: Australian Communications and Media Authority