Macquarie Telecom breached the Telecommunications Act and IPND industry code by failing to provide accurate records for thousands of landline and mobile services for five years, the communications watchdog has found.
ACMA said the company did not submit accurate records to the integrated public number database (IPND) for 142,499 services across 1272 customers between March 2010 and June last year, representing one-tenth of the 1.4 million services operated by the telco.
According to ACMA, 130,883 of the affected services had been ported over to the telco and only had the information that had been entered by previous providers, while the remaining 11,616 services had no IPND record at all.
iTnews understands Macquarie Telecom had issued its updates to the IPND through a third-party provider, but a systems fault meant those updates were never received by Telstra. The issue has since been rectified.
The breaches were in violation of subsection 101(1) of the Telecommunications Act 1997 - which requires RSPs to provide adequate information necessary to maintain the IPND - along with several clauses of the IPND industry code.
“Failure by a telco to provide customer information to the IPND is an issue that the ACMA takes very seriously, particularly given emergency service organisations rely on it to respond to calls to triple zero,” acting ACMA chairman Richard Bean said in a statement.
Following the investigation, ACMA issued the telco with a direction to comply, allowing it to apply to the federal court to fine the carrier for any future breaches.
ACMA has also accepted an enforceable undertaking from the carrier that requires the telco to appoint an executive-level operations compliance officer, and to undertake a full review of its IPND policies, processes and systems.
The enforceable undertaking also requires MacTel to provide staff with a comprehensive training program, conduct regular independent audits at its own expense and provide ACMA with quarterly reports signed off by the managing director.
The telecommunications and media industry watchdog acknowledged MacTel had cooperated fully with the investigation.
In a statement, MacTel industry and policy national executive Matt Healy said the carrier took its compliance obligations very seriously.
“Since identifying the problem, we have worked to identify where and how we can improve our processes and systems, and worked closely with ACMA to ensure they are satisfied with our proposed responses,” Healy said.
“We believe that the additional processes we have put in place will ensure that there is no further incident with our IPND processes.”