EE fined for nuisance texts

EE fine
(Image credit: EE) (Image credit: ee)

EE has been hit with a major fine after bombarding users with millions of unwanted texts.

The Information Commissioner Office (ICO) has hit the operator with a £100,000 fine after it was found to have sent 2.5 million messages during 2018.

The texts attempted to push EE customers to use the operator's own app, as well as urging them to update their handsets.

EE claimed that the messages were "service messages" rather than spam, however the ICO ruled that as they contained promotional material, they were subject to electronic marketing rules.

EE fine

"These were marketing messages which promoted the company's products and services," said Andy White, director of investigations at the ICO.

"The direct marketing guidance is clear: if a message that contains customer service information also includes promotional material to buy extra products for services, it is no longer a service message and electronic marketing rules apply."

Punishment for not complying with such rules can be up to £500,000, meaning EE only incurred a fraction of the possible costs.

In a statement, EE said it accepted the ICO's findings, and would look at improving its outreach processes in the future.

"We're committed to ensuring our customers are fully aware of their options throughout the life of their contract, and we apologise to the customers who received these messages," the company said.

Mike Moore
Deputy Editor, TechRadar Pro

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and fellow Future title ITProPortal, and when he's not keeping track of all the latest enterprise and workplace trends, can most likely be found watching, following or taking part in some kind of sport.