Recognizing WSIS Impacts

Unless it acknowledges key characteristics of the Internet, the World Summit on the Information Society will easily undermine it

WTDC Resolution 64

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WTDC RESOLUTION 64 (Rev. Dubai, 2014)

Protecting and supporting users/consumers of telecommunication/ information and communication technology services

The World Telecommunication Development Conference (Dubai, 2014),

  • considering
    • a) Article 1, No. 9, of the ITU Constitution, which states that the purpose of the Union is to promote, at the international level, the adoption of a broader approach to the issues of telecommunications in the global information economy and society;
    • b) Article 21, No. 127 of the Constitution, which states that the purpose of the ITU Telecommunication Development Sector is to offer advice and carry out or sponsor studies, as necessary, on technical, economic, financial, managerial, regulatory and policy issues;
    • c) § 13 e) of the Geneva Plan of Action of the World Summit on the Information Society, which states that governments should continue to update their domestic consumer-protection laws to respond to the new requirements of the information society;
    • d) §§ 4.4 and 4.5 of Article 4 of the International Telecommunication Regulations, requesting Member States to promote policies to ensure that authorized operating agencies provide free-of-charge, transparent, up-to-date and accurate information to end users on international telecommunication services, including international roaming prices and the associated relevant conditions, in a timely manner, and to encourage measures to ensure that telecommunication services in international roaming of satisfactory quality are provided to visiting users,
  • taking into account
    • a) ITU’s mandate to serve as coordinator and facilitator for Action Lines C5 and C6 of the Geneva Plan of Action;
    • b) that the basic principles of consumer and user relations include education and outreach on the appropriate consumption and use of products and services, in order to guarantee freedom of choice and fairness in contracting, together with clear and appropriate information on different products and services, with the correct specification of quantities, characteristics, composition, quality and price;
    • c) that information is the main input of the digital economy, for which reason it is recognized that the cross-border flow of personal consumer and user data demands the observance of national laws and regulations;
    • d) that the report entitled “Enforcing national telecommunications laws: Report and best practice guidelines” published in 2010,presented by the Rapporteur for Question 18-1/1, constitutes a first step in suggesting guidelines for enforcing user-protection regulations;
    • e) that policies on information transparency make it possible to increase the level and quality of the information provided by operators to users and consumers;
    • f) that the same policies should ensure access to telecommunications/information and communication technologies (ICTs) for persons with disabilities in conditions of use comparable to all other consumers and users;
    • g) that, for international roaming services, the quantity and quality of information provided to consumers and users would influence inversely the prices paid for those services,
  • resolves to instruct the Director of the Telecommunication Development Bureau
    • 1 to continue to support work aimed at raising awareness among decision-makers regarding telecommunications/ICTs as well as among regulatory agencies regarding the importance of keeping users and consumers informed about the basic characteristics, quality, security and rates of the different services offered by operators, and at creating other protection mechanisms to facilitate the exercise of consumers’ and users’ rights;
    • 2 to collaborate with the Member States in order to identify the critical areas for the establishment of policies or regulatory frameworks for the protection of consumers and users;
    • 3 to continue coordination with the ITU Telecommunication Standardization Sector on such topics as service quality, perceived quality and security;
    • 4 to strengthen relations with other international organizations and entities involved in consumer and user protection;
    • 5 to invite relevant regions to create their end-user and consumer associations,
  • urges Member States
    • 1 to create and promote policies that favour providing end users with information on the characteristics of the telecommunication services offered by different providers, considering especially those that facilitate the provision of free-of-charge, transparent, up-to-date and accurate information to consumers and end users on international telecommunication services, including international roaming prices and the associated relevant conditions, in a timely manner;
    • 2 to foster measures to ensure that telecommunication services in international roaming of satisfactory quality are provided to visiting users;
    • 3 to provide inputs that will disseminate best practices and policies they have implemented to build capacity for the development of related public policies and legal, regulatory and technical measures to address consumer and user protection, including personal data protection, taking into consideration the guidelines and recommendations from ITU and other relevant organizations, as appropriate,
  • invites Sector Members of the ITU Telecommunication Development Sector
    • to contribute inputs that will allow the dissemination of best practices and policies they have implemented related to the implementation of consumer- and user-protection policies, taking into consideration ITU guidelines and recommendations.

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