Activ8me pays penalty for misleading claims about ACCC

Telco provider Australian Private Networks Pty Ltd, trading as Activ8me, has paid a penalty of $12,600 after the ACCC issued an Infringement Notice for alleged false and misleading representations. It’s alleged Activ8me represented that its internet services were endorsed or approved by the ACCC as being superior to those offered by other providers, when this was not the case.

Between November 2017 and January 2018, Activ8me published on its website home page “Named Australia’s #1 Sky MusterTM provider by the ACCC”. On its Facebook page, Activ8me claimed: “The ACCC have released their quarterly NBN Wholesale Market Indicators Report today, once again naming Activ8me the #1 provider of nbn Sky Muster satellite services in Australia”.

The ACCC’s logo was published in close proximity to both statements.

The NBN Wholesale Market report listed Activ8me as having the highest number of satellite services in operation but did not endorse or approve Activ8me over other providers.

“The ACCC does not endorse or approve particular businesses and it is imperative that consumers trust our name and logo when it is used,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.

“As soon as we became aware of the misuse of our report findings and logo, we contacted Activ8me and issued an Infringement Notice. Activ8me has since removed the representations.  This penalty serves as a warning to companies that we will act swiftly if they misrepresent the ACCC.”

The ACCC can issue an Infringement Notice where it has reasonable grounds to believe that a person has contravened certain provisions of the Australian Consumer Law. The payment of a penalty specified in an Infringement Notice is not an admission of a contravention of the Act.