Optus found guilty of misleading advertising

Optus forced to correct broadband advertising and faces fines

Optus has been slapped with an injunction and faces hefty fines after being found of deceptive advertising by the Federal Court yesterday.

In a case brought by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), Optus was found guilty of misleading advertising in regards to its 'Think Bigger' and 'Supersonic' broadband Internet plans.

The 'Think Bigger' and 'Supersonic' broadband plans included on- and off-peak data allowances but Justice Perram found that Optus had misled its customers by not clarifying that speeds would be shaped to 64Kbps if their peak data allowance had been exceeded.

In his ruling, Justice Perram stated that "the contravention here is a serious one and the public should be protected from any further repetition of it," and prohibited Optus from launching similar advertising campaigns in the next three years. Optus was also ordered to pay all of the ACCC's court costs to date, with a ruling on further penalties and corrective advertising to be handed down on Friday.

Optus has not been forced to remove any of their advertisements but any future campaigns must comply with the injunction handed down by Justice Perram.

Optus maintained that its advertisements for the 'Think Bigger' and 'Supersonic' broadband plans were not misleading as customers were properly informed by call centres or the Web site when they signed up to a plan.

ACCC chairperson Graeme Samuels said in a statement that Optus had broken the law and could not rely on call centres to clarify misleading advertising. "Consumers and the ACCC are, frankly, tired of telcos using complex, confusing and deceptive advertising to fool consumers," he said.

Samuels also issued a warning to other telcos in regards to misleading advertising. "This should serve as yet another reminder, that if these companies don't clean up their act, the ACCC will be here to take you to task, and you can expect to be hit with the full force of the law."

In a response to the verdict, a spokesperson for Optus said, "It is never our intention to mislead our customers and we have corrected the advertising in question to make it clearer. We will continue to work with our customers to ensure they are completely satisfied with Optus."

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Internet speedsacccInternet pricingoptusbroadband

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Kevin Cheng

Good Gear Guide
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?