Uswitch ‘misled’ consumers
Utilities regulator Energywatch has accused price comparison website Uswitch – which claims to help people achieve cheaper utility bills
of misleading consumers by overstating the benefits to be enjoyed by switching energy supplier.-more->
Energywatch has given Uswitch five days to change the way it shows information or lose its accreditation. Its annoucement has come on the back of concerns that some price comparison websites have skewed results in favour of firms paying higher commissions.
But Uswitch launched a furious riposte to the accusations. “Our primary objective is to do what is best for consumers,” said a spokesperson. “We have lobbied Energywatch to review the code and implement an audit process for price comparison services, allowing people to benefit from cheaper utility bills, for the past three years.”
In reply, Energywatch said that Uswitch had ignored a discount offer by British Gas but included a similar offer by Powergen. But Uswitch countered that the discount under discussion did not apply for a whole year and therefore would not appear in any search relating to annual discounts.
Discussions between the two parties are set to commence in the next few days. A Uswitch spokesperson said: “We welcome any changes that increase consumer confidence that they will benefit from cheaper utility bills by using our service. We want to provide greater transparency in the industry overall.”