To indicate their dislike of telemarketers, 5.4 million Australian households have since signed up with the national Do Not Call Register. The list just breached the 5 million mark since the registry was started in 2007.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), which manages the registry, said the 5.4 million households listed is equivalent to almost two-thirds of the 8 million households in Australia that want to avoid unsolicited phone, mobile and fax calls mainly from telemarketers.
Those who are in the register reported a 90 per cent reduction in unwanted marketing calls which had blocked calls from 6,725 telemarketers and 194 fax marketers that created accounts to check numbers in the list. The registered numbers are on the list for six years, said ACMA Chairman Chris Chapman. The service is free.
ACMA had sanctioned several groups for breaching the Do Not Call Register Act 2006. Among the most recent violator was Sydney Leisure Guide, which submitted in October an enforceable undertaking to take part in compliance training and log its telemarketing efforts.
Besides protection from telemarketers, Aussie households would also have more shield against bill shock, complicated phone plans and marketing plans by registering the Telecommunications Consumer Protection Code which telcos are mandated to follow.
With the rules, industry players would be required to grant customers access to information, tools and remedies that would equip them to demand and drive better service, Mr Chapman said.
The code, which took effect Sept 27, requires the telcos to provide unit pricing for national calls, standard text messages and downloading one megabyte of data in advertisements. The move aims to protect customers from choosing the wrong plan which cost them up to $1.5 billion yearly.
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