Simon Read: It's time for a clear line on soaring mobile phone charges

More mobile phone problems have been reported by Citizens Advice ahead of today's World Consumer Rights Day. They include shock bills, phantom charges and billing errors that are driving people into debt.

Some 28,000 issues with mobile phones and contracts were reported to the consumer service in 2013. Making calls abroad, using the internet, scams and stolen phones has led to some customers being hit with shockingly high phone bills.

The consumer group has called for action from mobile phone providers to stop people being tipped into the red by unexpectedly high bills.

For instance, as it stands if you use your phone anywhere in the EU there is a limit on how much you can be charged. But mobile phone firms should extend this cap to cover countries further afield.

The whole mobile phone industry still appears to be awash with confusing tariffs and unfair charges. The more we can highlight bad deals and the service, the more we can help cut it out.

The good news is that Consumer Minister Jenny Willott is on the case. She said yesterday: "Nobody wants to be stung by sky-high and unfair charges on their mobile phone contracts. If people think they are getting a harsh deal then they should get in contact with Citizens Advice who can advise them on their rights."

s.read@independent.co.uk

Twitter: @simonnread

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