Optus 'Max Cap' ads cost telco $178k

ACCC slaps telco with fine over advertising

Optus has been fined by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) over the telco's advertisements for its "Max Cap" plans.

The ACCC handed Optus $178,200 worth of infringement notices relating to the ads, which ran in July and August last year. According to an ACCC statement, the watchdog believed that the ads misled consumers by advertising the minimum price of a plan instead of the maximum price as the name might imply.

"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," acting ACCC chairman Peter Kell said in a statement.

Kell said that the ACCC was concerned Optus' advertisements could mislead people about what they could use a plan's included credit for.

"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," Kell said.

It is not the first clash between Optus and the ACCC. Optus was ordered to run corrective advertising relating to its ‘Think Bigger’ and ‘Supersonic’ broadband offerings after the ACCC took legal action in September 2010.

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Tags TelecommunicationsoptusAustralian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)

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