Consumer panel calls on Vaizey to act on broadband speeds

Independent watchdog the Communications Consumer Panel has called on broadband minister Ed Vaizey to tackle the discrepancy between advertised and actual broadband speeds.

Independent watchdog the Communications Consumer Panel has called on broadband minister Ed Vaizey to tackle the discrepancy between advertised and actual broadband speeds.

The Communications Consumer Panel has asked for Vaizey, who has responsibility for communication, culture and the creative industries, to support Ofcom and the Advertising Standards Authority in their campaign to force ISPs to address the growing difference between advertised and actual broadband speeds by providing consumers with clearer information on broadband speeds.

In a letter to Vaizey, the panel's chair, Anna Bradley, said Ofcom's voluntary code places too high a burden on consumers. Bradley suggested ISPs change advertising practices, give consumers clearer information about speeds before and after sale, proactively address speed-related problems and give customers a discount or allow them to move provider within contracted periods if consumers are not getting the speeds they were led to expect.

"We hope we can count on your support in underscoring to the industry the need for them to do more and better to ensure consumers are treated fairly in this crucial market place," wrote Bradley.

The panel has yet to receive a formal response from the minister.

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