Vodafone has been found guilty of false advertising breaching the Fair Trading Act, less than two months after receiving a $400,000 fine for the same charge.
The latest case relates to offences committed between July and November 2008; the previous charges were for events that took place around the same period, although Vodafone faces a smaller fine of up to $200,000 this time.
The charge relates to a Commerce Commission complaint over Vodafone’s ‘$1 a day’ mobile internet plan. At the time, Vodafone stated that customers could pay $1 for 10MB of data, and that the company would only charge for what was used.
Customers were still charged $1 per day, even if they used only a small amount of data.
Vodafone said it did not deliberately set out to mislead customers, arguing that the plan was similar to an all-day parking scheme, where customers pay for a full day but don’t expect a refund if they leave at 11am.
The company now accepts its communication was not as clear as it should have been.
Sentencing will take place on November 10.