Make a Freedom of Information request
Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOI Act) we are required to provide information we hold, unless an exemption applies.
The FOI Act does not require us to create information or collate lists from different sources. We are also not required to provide advice, explanations or opinions on subject matters within our remit. If you are seeking advice, explanations or opinions rather than information we may currently hold, you should not make an FOI request. You can instead contact us online, by phone or in writing.
If we do not hold the information requested we will generally seek to provide you with publicly available information that may be helpful or identify other organisations that may be able to help.
If your request relates to the environment, we are required to deal with it under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR) even though it has been submitted as an FOI request.
What can I ask about?
You can ask whether we hold information about anything related to Ofcom's remit. But to check if the information is already available, please search or browse this website first. You might find it useful to check:
- our publication scheme, which may help you gain a better understanding of the type of information we hold and can release;
- our responses to previous requests; and
- other sources of information, for example on topics like exposure to electromagnetic frequencies (EMF), masts and 5G. We have published:
Connected Nations and infrastructure reports
We publish detailed reports on the UK's communications infrastructure, including information on coverage and service availability.
Complain about something you have seen on TV, radio or on-demand
If you want to complain about a TV, radio or on-demand programme, you can make a complaint on our website.
Our decisions on complaints about TV, radio and on-demand programmes
Every fortnight we publish our Broadcast and On-Demand Bulletin, which includes decisions about the complaints we have considered. The Bulletin covers a range of cases, including those which Ofcom has escalated for full investigation, those which Ofcom has decided not to pursue because they did not raise issues warranting investigation, and those which fall outside Ofcom’s remit.
Procurement and contracts
Ofcom uses a broad range of suppliers, including SMEs, who are appointed following suitable competitive tendering processes. Information regarding Ofcom’s approach to procurement (PDF, 302.3 KB) is available on our website.
If you have a question about procurement which is not an FOI request, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are interested in becoming a supplier to Ofcom, we encourage you to register on our eTendering Portal.
We aim to be as transparent as possible and to make information available without the need to request it.
However, under the FOI Act we can withhold certain information, for example if:
- it is commercially sensitive or confidential;
- its disclosure may constitute an unwarranted invasion of privacy; or
- it might affect our need to have a free and frank exchange of views or deliberation and would hamper Ofcom’s ability to fulfil our regulatory duties.
We can also refuse to release information that is intended for publication at a subsequent date.
If you request information that we consider exempt under the FOI Act, we will explain why we consider an exemption applies.
How can I submit a request?
Fill out the Freedom of Information (FOI) form to make a request for information.
You can also email us at email@example.com.
We will respond to your request via your email address.
If you require help or advice in accessing information, you can call the Ofcom Contact Centre on:
Telephone: 0300 123 3333
Textphone: 020 7981 3043
Welsh Language Line: 0300 123 2023
Wherever possible we will provide information in an accessible format.
Submitting a request on social media
- tag Ofcom on the social media platform to send us a notification of your request (if you would like to make a request in Welsh, our Welsh-language Twitter account is @OfcomCymraeg);
- include your full name and question; and
- state 'FOI' anywhere in your message.
Our social media team will acknowledge your post and respond accordingly.
Please note that while we do accept requests via social media, we may ask for an email address in order to deal with your request, or to verify that the request is from a 'real person'. This is in line with the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) guidance.
We are unable to publish our FOI decision letter directly on social media. Instead, we will publish a copy of the letter on our website and provide a link to that letter when responding to your social media post.
How much does it cost?
In most instances requests are free. However, if you are requesting large amounts of information that require lots of printing, photocopying or formatting, then we are allowed to charge a small amount to cover these costs. We will always let you know if a charge is likely.
How long will it take to hear back?
We will respond to you about your request within 20 working days of receiving it.
What if I'm not satisfied with the response?
You have the right to request an internal review. For example, if we haven't responded within time limits, did not provide proper advice and assistance, failed to explain whether we hold the information or did not properly explain reasons for refusing the request or applying an exemption under the FOI Act.
Internal review requests should be made within 40 working days after receipt of the FOI response. We are not obliged to accept an internal review request after this date unless there are extenuating circumstances. Please explain clearly the reasons why you disagree with our response, provide supporting evidence if applicable, and give your reasons for why you should have the information if you don't think these have been considered.
If you are still not happy after the internal review process you have the right to appeal to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) and ask them to review our response. The ICO are the UK’s independent body that oversees information rights including those set out in the FOI Act and EIR. The ICO can be contacted as follows:
Information Commissioner's Office