The UK’s big mobile and internet service providers have come together with the UK government and OFCOM to agree a series of measures to help vulnerable customers through the Coronavirus crisis.
The major networks across telecoms including BT/EE, Openreach, Virgin Media, Sky, TalkTalk, O2, Vodafone, Three, Hyperoptic, Gigaclear, and KCOM held discussions with the UK’s digital secretary Oliver Dowden and OFCOM and committed to supporting and protecting customers who are deemed to be vulnerable during the COVID-19 situation.
With many people facing financial uncertainty along with self isolation and social distancing, the vulnerable members of society may need help not only with bills but also with being able to stay in touch with family and loved ones.
A statement published on the official UK Gov website outlined the agreed measures:
“All providers have committed to working with customers who find it difficult to pay their bill as a result of Covid-19 to ensure that they are treated fairly and appropriately supported.
"All providers will remove all data allowance caps on all current fixed broadband services.
"All providers have agreed to offer some new, generous mobile and landline packages to ensure people are connected and the most vulnerable continue to be supported. For example, some of these packages include data boosts at low prices and free calls from their landline or mobile.
"All providers will ensure that vulnerable customers or those self-isolating receive alternative methods of communication wherever possible if priority repairs to fixed broadband and landlines cannot be carried out.”
Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “It’s fantastic to see mobile and broadband providers pulling together to do their bit for the national effort by helping customers, particularly the most vulnerable, who may be struggling with bills at this difficult time. It is essential that people stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives. This package helps people to stay connected whilst they stay home.”
These commitments have been agreed on top of the support measures the networks have already put in place as a response to Coronavirus.
Find out more about what UK networks are doing to help during the crisis.