Ofcom has fined mobile network provider O2 £75,000 for “failing to provide accurate and complete answers” to its questions regarding alleged network traffic discrimination.
Since October 2018, Ofcom has been investigating the mobile operator’s traffic management practices on its 3G and 4G network.
The UK’s 2016 Open Internet Code requires network providers to treat all internet traffic equally without discrimination, restriction or interference. According to the rules, broadband ISPs and mobile operators are not permitted to impose excessive restrictions against legal internet traffic.
Due to the investigation, O2 said that it would stop compressing streamed video content across its network, and stop compressing any web content or images to manage traffic. But Ofcom believes that O2 has not provided adequate information regarding the matter.
An Ofcom spokesperson said: “Given the importance and reliance that we place on the information requested under our statutory powers, we consider that an incomplete and inaccurate response is a serious matter. Accordingly, we have found O2 in breach of its obligations and imposed a penalty of £75,000 in respect of this contravention.”
The news of the fine comes as O2 customers experience further network downtime today (22nd of March 2019). Customers began reporting problems from 8.57am this morning, according to Down Detector, a website that offers a real-time overview of issues and outages with various services.
An O2 spokesperson said: “We’re aware of an issue impacting voice services. Our technical teams are investigating. We apologise for any inconvenience.”
O2 also advised customers to check for network status updates on its website: http://o2.uk/nnC0WYCustomers
Customers vented their rage on Twitter, with one user saying: “Omg. @O2 down again. They get it sorted then breaks again – what a joke.”
O2 customers previously suffered a major loss of service on the 7th of December 2018, with the network down for 24 hours.