/>
X
Innovation

GAO thumps FCC on wireless oversight

The General Accountability Office put pressure on the Federal Communications Commission to step up oversight of the wireless industry and respond to consumer complaints.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor on

The General Accountability Office put pressure on the Federal Communications Commission to step up oversight the wireless industry and better respond to consumer complaints.

In a report, the GAO said:

  • Wireless customers have experienced problems with billing, contract terms and customer service.
  • The raw number of complaints seems relatively low, but that's because consumers didn't know where to complain.
  • The FCC "receives tens of thousands of wireless consumer complaints each year and forwards them to carriers for response, but has conducted little other oversight of services provided by wireless phone service carriers because the agency has focused on promoting competition."
  • Meanwhile, customers don't know where to complain and the FCC lacks measures to process complaints or identify remedies.
  • There's also a disconnect between the FCC and state regulators. The big issue: It's unclear how much power the states have.

The GAO based its findings on a poll of 1,143 adult wireless phone users.

Let's roll the charts (culled from GAO's PDF report):

Editorial standards