Telephone number loss an issue for consumers and small business

A new report highlighting the issue of phone number loss when migrating to the National Broadband Network (NBN) is recommending greater action by phone companies – including better communication with consumers and small businesses.

Residential consumers and small businesses generally expect to retain their existing phone numbers when moving between providers or to the NBN. Some are not aware their fixed line service may be affected when they migrate to the new network.

The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman recommends four key actions for telcos to reduce the incidence and impact of phone number loss including requiring consumers to opt-out of keeping their existing fixed line number instead of opting-in to retain it. Additionally, the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman recommends telcos enhance their communication with each other to reduce number loss and facilitate the retrieval of lost numbers.

The Ombudsman, Judi Jones, says she expects the ACMA’s service continuity standards will also help, and her office will continue to monitor this issue as well as continuing to work with the Government, the ACMA, and providers.

The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman released the report in what is the first of a series of reports on systemic issues.

You can read the report here