Customers entitled to an easy and instant service to check the duration of fixed-term subscriptions – Administrative Court rejected DNA’s appeal

As from 1 January 2022 telecommunications operators have been required to provide consumers with an opportunity to check the end date of their fixed-term mobile subscription contracts via a text message (SMS). According to the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency Traficom, the service provided by DNA Plc has not met the requirements laid down by law, and Traficom issued a notice of a conditional fine to DNA to enforce the obligation. DNA took the matter to the Administrative Court, but the court rejected DNA's appeal.

As from the beginning of this year, consumers have been able to check the duration of their fixed-term mobile subscription contracts by sending the message ‘SOPIMUS’ (or ‘ABONNEMANG’ in Swedish) to the number 18321. The service will immediately send a response with the end date of the fixed-term contract in question. Consumers can use the service, for example, if they receive an offer from another telecommunications operator and consider changing service providers. 

The Administrative Court rejected DNA’s appeal – DNA must fix its service to comply with law by 31 July 2022

“The purpose of the service for checking contract details is to promote competition by giving all consumers an easy and quick way to check the duration of their current contracts free of charge. All consumers must have an equal opportunity to use the service,” says Deputy Director-General Jenni Eskola.

DNA has required its consumers to give separate consent to allow the service. This means that DNA’s customers cannot use the service before approving it. Traficom required the company to change the practice by 2 March 2022 and issued a notice of a conditional fine to the company to enforce the obligation.

DNA appealed against the requirement to the Administrative Court. The Administrative Court has now rejected DNA’s appeal. The company must implement the service in compliance with the law by 31 July 2022. DNA may appeal against the Administrative Court's decision if the Supreme Administrative Court grants the company a leave to appeal.

Traficom supervises that telecommunications operators provide the service as required by the law.

ENQUIRIES

Jukka Rakkolainen, Communications Network Specialist, tel. 029 539 0361, jukka.rakkolainen@traficom.fi (6–8 July 2022)

Jenni Eskola, Deputy Director-General, tel. 029 539 0307, jenni.eskola@traficom.fi 
(11–15 July 2022)

Previous news on the matter:

Consumers' right to check the duration of fixed-term contracts not realised in an easy and quick manner in the service provided to DNA’s customers – Traficom imposes a conditional fine to ensure correct implementation (2 February 2022, in Finnish and Swedish)  

Consumers can check the validity of their mobile subscriptions via SMS – new service introduced at the beginning of 2022 (3 January 2022)