- What are service providers?
- Who is responsible for the standards of service of service providers?
- Where can I get more information on service providers?
There are two types of service providers-carriage service providers and content service providers.
A carriage service provider uses a carriage service to supply carriage services (for example phone or Internet access services) to the public using network units owned by a carrier or in relation to which a nominated carrier declaration is in force.
A content service provider is a person who supplies content services to the public (for example a pay TV service).
Where a carrier is engaged in these activities, they are also considered to be a service provider.
All service providers must comply with legislated service provider rules. These rules include obligations to:
- comply with the Telecommunications Act 1997. This includes an obligation on carriage service providers supplying the standard telephone service, mobile services or Internet access services to join the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman scheme;
- provide directory assistance, operator services and itemised billing to customers using the standard telephone service; and
- in the case of carriage service providers, comply with access obligations imposed by the telecommunications access regime.
Before signing a contract with a service provider, it is important to fully understand the terms and conditions of the contract. You should be clear on the procedures for handling service faults, maintenance and general enquiries and complaints.
Who is responsible for the standards of service of service providers?
Your carriage service provider has full responsibility for the services it provides to you. For this reason it is important to read and understand all the terms and conditions of your contract. For example, a contract may permit a service provider to transfer its customer to another service provider.
If you have a problem with the service you are being provided, you should initially approach your carriage service provider and try to resolve the problem with them.
If this does not resolve the issue, you may wish to contact the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO). As an office of last resort, the TIO can only take up a case if the customer has first tried to solve the complaint with the company direct. If a customer has been to their company and remains dissatisfied, they can then come to the TIO.
Where can I get more information on service providers?
The ACMA does not licence nor keep a register of service providers.
Carriage service providers which supply the standard telephone service, mobile services or Internet services are required to join the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) scheme. The TIO is able to provide names of members of this scheme.
Alternatively, for information on Service Providers and what they offer, contact the industry association, Communications Alliance Ltd (formerly SPAN) on:
Telephone: 02 9959 9111
Facsimile: 02 9954 6136