Own-initiative investigation into Barritel’s compliance with GC17 and the National Telephone Numbering Plan

13 February 2019

Complainant: Own initiative investigation
Investigation against: Barritel Limited
Case opened: 14 September 2017
Case closed: 18 October 2017 
Issue: Whether Barritel has contravened the requirements set out in General Condition 17 and the National Telephone Numbering Plan
Relevant Instrument: General Condition 17 of the General Conditions of Entitlement (“GC17”)

Ofcom has now closed the investigation concerning Barritel’s “0800 Wizard” service and its compliance with General Condition (‘GC17’) and the National Telephone Numbering Plan (the ‘NTNP’).

This is because Barritel has now ceased the 0800 Wizard service and removed its related website and mobile app. We are therefore satisfied that the conduct we were concerned about has ceased and that there is unlikely to be any ongoing harm to consumers or competition. In the circumstances, we consider that our resources would be better targeted at other cases rather than pursuing further enforcement action in this matter.

Text published when case was opened

On 14 September 2017 Ofcom opened an investigation into Barritel Limited’s “0800 Wizard” service and its compliance with General Condition 17 (GC17) and the National Telephone Numbering Plan (the ‘NTNP’).

GC17 sets out requirements relating to allocation, adoption and use of telephone numbers that Communication Providers (CPs) must comply with. This includes a requirement (GC17.4(a)) that CPs shall comply with:

“all applicable restrictions and requirements as are set out in the National Telephone Numbering Plan”.

Part B of the NTNP sets out the restrictions and requirements in relation to the telephone numbers. Section B3.2.1 “Non-Geographic Numbers” states that:

“Those who Adopt or otherwise use Non-Geographic Numbers starting 03 shall not directly or indirectly share with any End-User or any Calling Party any revenue obtained from providing a service on those numbers”.

Ofcom’s investigation will examine whether there are reasonable grounds for believing that the way Barritel offers its “0800 Wizard” service to customers is contravening the requirements set out in GC 17 and the NTNP.

We anticipate being in a position to decide whether there are grounds to issue a provisional breach notification within 4 months, and we currently aim to complete the investigation within 6 months.

Case Leader: Sheryl Willson (sheryl.willson@ofcom.org.uk)
Case Reference: CW/01203/08/17