UK: Ofcom's new rules make it easier to switch broadband providers

The UK’s digital regulator, Ofcom, has announced that new rules that it’s planning to introduce will make it easier for customers to switch between broadband networks because the new provider will manage the switch. The rules already exist for customers switching between some networks that use a copper wire.

With the new rules, customers using different providers such as CityFibre, Gigaclear, Hyperoptic, and Virgin Media will be able to get their new supplier to handle the switch. Currently, these customers need to contact both their existing and new provider to ensure there are no gaps during the switch over. A sizable amount of people say they avoid switching due to all the hassle they have to endure to switch, with the new rules these customers will be free to use a different service.

Commenting on the new rules, Lindsey Fussell, Ofcom’s Consumer Group Director, said:

“Switching broadband provider should be quick, simple and hassle-free. Our plans would make it even easier to shop around – putting an end to needless time and effort spent dealing with different broadband companies.”

The regulator said that providers would have to compensate customers if anything goes wrong and service is unavailable for more than one working day. Under the rules, notice-period charges beyond the switch date will also be banned. The regulator has not given a specific date for when the new rules will come into effect.

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