Mobile network EE has been hit a ‘massive’ fine from the Information Commissioner’s Office after sending unsolicited marketing texts to customers.
The ICO announced that it had fined EE a total of £100,000 for sending out over 2.5 million marketing messages to its customers despite not having consent. EE tried to dodge the fine by claiming that they were merely service messages, but this excuse was batted away because the messages included direct marketing. If EE fails to comply going forward it may be hit with an eye-watering £500,000 fine.
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The ICO stated: “The direct marketing guidance is clear: if a message that contains customer service information also includes promotional material to buy extra products for services, it is no longer a service message and electronic marketing rules apply.”
It’s important to remember that marketing messages can only be sent with permission; opt-outs must be present at the time of sign-up and on every following marketing message you receive. If this isn’t the case, you can make a complaint to the ICO to report the behaviour.
Trusted Reviews has contacted EE for comment on the fine.
News of the fine comes after EE recently unveiled its new 5G mobile network — the UK’s first — which has been active in six British cities since May 30: London, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh, Belfast, and Cardiff. Ten more major cities will join EE’s 5G network by the end of 2019, and Vodafone has announced that it launch its 5G network on July 3. Three and O2 will also join the party before the end of the year, but we’re still awaiting firm dates for the roll out.
Related: What is 5G?
We’ve tried out EE’s 5G network at several sites across London, including Covent Garden, Soho, and Charing Cross, and clocked up very fast speeds of up to 410Mbps, noticing the effect tends to be more pronounced outside. Let’s hope EE can turn around its recent customer service misstep just as quickly.