Wednesday, March 22, 2023

CFM calls for Public Feedback on Consumer Codes that Telcos should Comply

The Consumer Forum of Malaysia (CFM) is calling for public feedback on the review of General Consumer Code of Practice for the Communications and Multimedia Industry Malaysia (GCC). The public consultation is the final step in the review process and it starts from 3 March 2020 until 16 April 2020 (45 days).


In brief, the General Consumer Code of Practice for the Communications and Multimedia Industry Malaysia or simply known as GCC is a voluntary industry code or practice that was registered in 2003 by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) to serve as a guideline and benchmark for service providers in the provision of communications and multimedia services to consumers. Some of these service providers include Maxis, Celcom Axiata, Digi, U Mobile, Yes4G, Telekom Malaysia, Altel, Tune Talk, XOX, redONE, Time dotCom, Astro and TV3.

Currently, the objective of GCC (2003) include:

  • reasonably meeting Consumer requirements
  • the handling of customer complaints and disputes
  • the creation of an inexpensive mediation or process other than the court and procedures for compensation of the customers in case of a breach of the consumer code
  • the protection of consumer information
  • to endeavour to achieve the relevant national policy objectives of the CMA 1998;
  • to provide benchmarks for the communications and multimedia Service Providers for the benefit of consumers
  • to promote a high level of consumer confidence in service delivery from the industry.
  • to provide guidelines for self-regulation among the industry

The GCC has not been reviewed and updated for the past 16 years, even though there have been significant changes in the communications and multimedia industry. The GCC was supposed to be reviewed by MCMC every 3 years since 2003.

However, in the past few years, the current GCC (dated 2003) had undergone a review process, driven by CFM, in line with current industry developments. Following this, the public consultation will be the final step before the latest version of the GCC (2020) will be implemented by MCMC. CFM said that this exercise is to ensure that the public (particularly Malaysia consumers) are adequately engaged and consulted in the finalisation of the new version of the GCC.

According to CFM, the main focus for this public consultation on GCC is based on the following five (5) topics:

  1. Specific protection for consumers with special needs
  2. Required information regarding direct carrier billing subscriptions
  3. Renewal of service contract terms and conditions
  4.  International roaming services
  5. Classification of simple complaints vs. complex complaints

Some of the review and changes in the new GCC 2020 include:

  • Assistance for persons with disabilities (OKU)
  • Advertising related to Internet/Broadband and mobile services
  • Contractual terms and conditions (postpaid/broadband contracts, auto renewals)
  • Credit management action (CTOS)
  • Personal data protection
  • Complaints handling (including complaints that can closed with the consent of the Subscribers)

Members of the public are encouraged to provide feedback on this public consultation in order to ensure that GCC version 2020 takes into account the current needs and circumstances of the Malaysian communications and multimedia consumers.

[Link]–  GCC 2020 PUBLIC SURVEY on Google Doc by CFM
[PDF Link]– General Consumer Code of Practice 2020 (Under Review)
[PDF Link]– General Consumer Code of Practice 2003

CFM was established and designated by MCMC in February 2001 as an industry forum under Section 189 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 (CMA 1998). It is a platform for the industry and the public to make coherent and constructive contributions to service improvements and policy developments in the communications and multimedia industry.

CFM is tasked with, amongst others, promoting the growth of Malaysia’s communications and multimedia industry and the protection of consumer interests by fostering the highest standards of business ethics and behaviour through industry self-governance. CFM also facilitates complaints redress between service providers and consumers.

Kugan is the co-founder of MalaysianWireless. He has been observing the mobile industry since 2003. Connect with him on Twitter: @scamboy

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