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Two Virgin Media broadband adverts have been banned by the industry regulator after they were judged to be potentially misleading to consumers.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) received complaints about two mailed circulars, which were designed to promote Virgin Media's broadband coverage.

Each of the mailings contained a similar message. The first stated "Over 80% of your neighbourhood is connected", while the second read "We're in your neighbourhood and didn't want you to miss out".

Virgin Media told the ASA that its circulars are delivered based on postcode sectors and the serviceability of an area.

However, the firm revealed that postcode sectors do not match directly with its network area. As such, Virgin Media is unable to guarantee that individual households receiving a mailing will be able to connect to its broadband services.

The ASA ruled that the circulars gave the impression coverage was available in particular neighbourhoods, where the mailings were delivered.

"We noted the small print related to the possibility that some homes may not be able to be connected to Virgin's services," the regulator stated.

"However, we did not consider that, in relation to the headline claim, that this was sufficient to alert recipients of the mailing that they may not be able to receive Virgin's services."

Virgin Media has been instructed not to repeat the broadband adverts again in their current form.

The broadband provider was told to avoid making claims which imply a specific proportion of consumers - or an area - is connected to its network, when this is in fact not the case.

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