Telco fires back as regulator reveals refund dispute

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Telco fires back as regulator reveals refund dispute

The director of a regional ISP is unhappy with industry watchdog the Australian Communications and Media Authority for revealing a refund dispute before the window to review the decision had closed. 

In an announcement released on Wednesday morning, ACMA revealed it had directed Digital Technologies and Telecommunications, trading as Airlan, to comply with a Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman decision to refund a former customer $660. 

Airlan director Armen Gregorian told CRN the company was in the process of reviewing the decision in accordance with its entitlements and the designated review period, which had not yet closed at the time of the announcement.

Gregorian said ACMA had not complied with due processes after it published the press release prior to finalising its content with him as per an earlier agreement.

ACMA acting chairman Richard Bean said in the announcement: "The TIO scheme is an important consumer safeguard to ensure confidence in the provision of communications services in Australia." 

"While the overwhelming number of providers respect the decisions of the independent umpire, the ACMA takes it extremely seriously when a provider doesn’t play by the rules."

The ACMA later released an update to its first announcement, stating: "The ACMA wishes to advise that Airlan has until 24 April 2017 to request a reconsideration of the ACMA’s decision."

Airlan is a south east NSW-based telecommunications carrier and ISP, which covers businesses from the Snowy Mountains to the Sapphire Coast.

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