The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), on Friday, January 29, stated that it has intervened in the cases of data depletion as well as wrong deductions of credit of consumers.
An ongoing forensic audit would be instituted to ensure maximum protection for consumers, the Commission explained.
This was disclosed in Abuja by the Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, via a statement signed by the NCC Director, Public Affairs, Dr Ikechukwu Adinde.
Danbatta maintained that consumer protection remains a key focus area of the Commission’s regulatory activities.
He also said the NCC has accomplished significant improvements; through various initiatives aimed at putting mobile operators on their toes.
According to him, through the ongoing forensic audit, the NCC plans “to get to the bottom of why consumers are experiencing data depletion and the possibility of compensating them for wrong deductions; which may arise from short message service (SMS).
“We have instituted and we have insisted that despite the fall in data price; that forensic audit must go on and must be concluded; and the outcome communicated to the CEOs of telecom companies.”
Danbatta said operators will be made to comply with whatever directions are given after the investigation with a view to ensuring maximum protection for telecom consumers.
The statement said, “He, however, noted that the Commission has developed Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on data depletion, which are designed to inform consumers on activities that may result in faster depletion of their data as well as enlighten them on measures to mitigate such. The FAQs are accessible from the Commission’s website.
“Over the years, the NCC has given a boost to consumer protection empowerment through sustained awareness creation; and education on consumer rights and privileges.
“It was for this reason that the Commission declared the year 2016 as the ‘Year of the Consumer’ with elaborate programmes to further underscore the NCC’s commitment to consumer protection; information; as well as education.
“The Commission has intensified its compliance monitoring exercises with the acquisition of efficient tools; as well as capacities to bring sanity in the industry all in a bid to improve the quality of consumer experience.
“Among several initiatives, Danbatta said the introduction of the Do-Not-Disturb (DND) has helped over 30 million consumers; to block unsolicited text messages on their phones while stern regulatory actions are constantly taken by the regulator; against any operator that prevents a consumer from subscribing to the DND service.
“Also, the EVC said the Commission launched the 622 Toll-free Number, which consumers can use to lodge; and escalate service-related complaints to the Commission for resolution; stating that thousands of complaints have been successfully resolved since its introduction.
“He further restated the commitment of NCC to the protection and empowerment of telecom consumers using the over 208 million active telephone lines in the country, as according to him, consumers remain critical stakeholders in the Nigerian telecommunications sector and so must be adequately protected to ensure sustainability.”